Pete Gallego and Quico Canseco Debate in Spanish

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Last night, the candidates for the 23rd congressional district House seat debate in the first-ever major Spanish-language debate between major Texas candidates. The choice between these candidates could not have been made any more clear by the debate.

When talking about the border, Canseco said: “I was born on the border; I was born in Laredo. I know the border quite well; I know the dynamics. It's a machine that could be producing a great deal of jobs.”  His solutions? Non-existent. Just assertions that the region needs jobs and better border security. Yeah, but how? The man is an empty suit. A corporatist with no actual beliefs.

“The best government is that government which governs less. This is the American dream our families came to this country for,” Canseco said later in the debate. As Dwight Schrute would say to Canseco, FALSE. Immigrants come to America for the opportunity it provides, and sometimes government has a very important role in making sure those opportunities are provided. Strong, freely available education, anyone? Reproductive rights, anyone? Economic opportunity, anyone? These are policies Canseco doesn't support – even the last one. He fights for tax cuts and deregulation that only helps those at the top of our society, never helping those less fortunate by birth to climb ahead.

Gallego gave a strong debate performance, outwitting Canseco while exposing him for the fraud he is. He slammed Canseco's support for turning Medicare into a voucher program (read: privatize and ruin it), and highlighted Canseco's lockstep with the Republican Party. “He wants to be our voice, but he only has the most extremist ideas. In Congress he's become a parrot for the ideas of his party. We need a leader, not someone who follows others,” said Gallego.

No wonder Gallego is getting such great support from progressive groups all over the country. Learn more after the jump the slams coming Canseco's way about his jobs record and environmental record.The League of Conservation Voters is about to come after Canseco for giving himself a tax cut while slashing jobs for Americans and hurting our environment.

LCV Ad Hits Canseco for Voting to Give Himself a Tax Cut While Slashing Jobs

$600,000 buy in San Antonio market highlights votes against clean energy

**View the Ad**

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The League of Conservation Voters (LCV) today launched a $600,000 television ad campaign against Rep. Francisco Canseco (TX-23) for voting to provide tax cuts for millionaires like him while slashing job-creating investments in clean energy. The ad buy will run on cable and broadcast in the San Antonio market beginning today and running through October 18th.

“Congressman Canseco got to Washington and voted to give himself a huge tax cut while endangering thousands of clean energy jobs in Texas,” said Navin Nayak, LCV Senior Vice President of Campaigns.

The ad hits Canseco for voting for the extreme Ryan budget, which would slash billions of dollars of investments in clean energy technology while providing huge new tax cuts for millionaires like him. In voting for this plan, Canseco was voting to give himself a tax cut of about $2,800 every year. Also, Canseco was slapped with more than $715,000 in liens over unpaid taxes and fees.  

Canseco was also one of just 69 members of Congress who voted to eliminate funding for the Department of Energy's energy efficiency and renewable energy programs. Canseco's voting record is so bad that he's earned a horrible 3% lifetime score on LCV's National Environmental Scorecard.

LCV has already spent more than $300,000 in this race. Last month, Canseco was named to LCV's $2 million Flat Earth Five program for his extreme anti-science positions. The program aims to defeat five climate change deniers in the House of Representatives this election cycle.

The non-partisan scorecard is a nationally accepted yardstick used to rate members of Congress on environmental and clean energy issues. Based on key environmental votes in the House and Senate, it is often used by the media to quickly describe a Member's position. For more information, visit

Backup for the ad is available here.

The Sierra Club has included Cansceo in its “Toxic Money, Toxic Votes” campaign hitting six terrible, anti-environment Republicans across the country. They have a great page on Canseco breaking down the many reasons to vote him out of office.

Sierra Club Targets Six House Incumbents With “Toxic Money, Toxic Votes” Campaign

New Ad Campaign Will Highlight Corrosive Influence of Fossil Fuel Industry Money on Incumbents' Voting Records

View First Ad (CA-07) – View First Mail Piece (CA-07) – View Website

Washington, D.C. – Today, Sierra Club Independent Action launched its new “Toxic Money, Toxic Votes” campaign, targeting six House incumbents. This effort will invest significant resources on mail, network and cable television advertising to highlight the records of incumbents who have put the dangerous agendas of their big oil, gas, and coal campaign donors ahead of the health of their constituents and their communities.

“Big oil, gas, and coal companies have been flooding our political system with hundreds of millions of dollars, drowning out the voices of middle-class families and pushing their dirty energy agenda ahead of the needs of everyone else,” said Cathy Duvall, Sierra Club Director of Public Advocacy and Partnerships. “These six incumbents are among the worst of the worst at taking toxic money from fossil fuel billionaires and making toxic votes that threaten the health American families.”

The six incumbents targeted in the “Toxic Money, Toxic Votes” campaign are:

Rep. Quico Canseco (TX-23)

Rep. Mike Coffman (CO-06)

Rep. Chris Gibson (NY-19)

Rep. Dan Lungren (CA-07)

Rep. Jim Renacci (OH-16)

Rep. Bobby Schilling (IL-17)

To kick off the campaign, a new heavy saturation  television ad will begin airing today in Rep. Dan Lungren's district (CA-07). The ad highlights Lungren's consistent record of voting to gut public health safeguards, let big polluters off the hook for pumping toxins into our air and water, and give Big Oil billions in tax subsidies while  taking more than $455,000 in campaign cash from oil and gas companies throughout his political career. The ad will air three hundred times in Lungren's district over ten days, meaning the average CA-07 voter will see it 10 to 12 times. You can view the ad here.

“Throughout his long political career, Dan Lungren has made it clear that the profits of the Big Oil companies that pumped nearly half a million dollars into his campaigns are more important than the health and safety of California families,” said Duvall. “Whether it's his consistent votes to dole out billions in tax giveaways to BP and Shell or to shred the protections that keep our air and water clean, Lungren's put the polluters who pay his way first.”

A mailer amplifying the same message will be sent this week to more than 60,000 homes in Lungren's district. You can view the mailer here.

Today, Sierra Club Independent Action also launched the “Toxic Money, Toxic Votes” website, which will house all forthcoming mail and TV ads for the campaign. New efforts will be announced in the coming weeks.


About Author

Ben Sherman

Ben Sherman has been a BOR staff writer since 2011. A graduate of the University of Texas, Ben has worked on campaigns, in political consulting, and has written for other news outlets like Think Progress. Ben considers campaign finance reform the fundamental challenge of our time because it distorts almost every other issue in American politics.

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