Sema Hernandez, a Texas activist and organizer for the Poor People’s Campaign, officially kicked off her campaign in Houston over the weekend.
“I am going to fight to eradicate systemic racism, to eradicate economic injustice, to overturn 40 years of neoliberal policies that have led to the economic disparities and healthcare disparities in this country and the state of Texas,” Hernandez told supporters at a campaign event at the Axelrad Beer Garden on Saturday.
In 2018, Hernandez became the first the Latina Democrat to seek the U.S. Senate nomination. During the Democratic primary that included Rep. Beto O’Rourke, her grassroots run with a $4,000 budget received 245,847 votes, or almost a quarter of the votes cast in the contest.
“I know that other candidates, other campaigns have the money, have millions of dollars,” Hernandez said. “But where they fall short is on trust and support of the voters and of the people. And that’s how we’re going to win. By forming a coalition of other candidates on these progressive issues that will deeply impact our marginalized communities.”
Hernandez supports single-payer Medicare for All, tuition-free college, and a Green New Deal, among other issues. She is a member of the Democratic Socialists of America and an organizer for the Poor People’s Campaign, a movement that calls for an end to systemic racism, inequality and endless war.
“I am proud to say that I do not have the endorsement of candidates who have perpetuated the war economy, who continue to incarnate our black and brown bodies, who continue to shut down our public school systems for profit,” Hernandez said.
She is one of two announced female Democratic candidates in Texas running for U.S. Senate, the other being former Air Force helicopter pilot MJ Hegar who visited Houston on Monday. A third woman, Amanda Edwards of Houston, is considering jumping into the race.