Earlier this week, Democratic primary candidate for House District 77 in El Paso, Lyda Ness-Garcia was physically attacked at her home. This attack, just as any other against a person, is completely unacceptable. We hope for Lyda Ness-Garcia and her family's speedy recovery as primary campaign season nears an end. We applaud her strength that she has displayed through this trying situation.
This is more evidence that violent threats made against candidates and officials carry weight. As a candidate, putting yourself in the public sphere creates additional risk for violence. Many might recall back in 2012 when a molotov cocktail was thrown at State Senator Wendy Davis' office. Burnt Orange Report has reported extensively the many death threats that have remained uncensored on Greg Abbott's Facebook page. These occurrences, and the many threats that Davis still receives today, are rooted in unabashed misogyny and hatred that have no place in politics, or any civil discourse.
In a statement released late Monday, Lyda Ness-Garcia stated she believed their motives were political, but could not provide additional details because of the nature of the attack and because its investigation was still ongoing.
It is our hope that those who assaulted Ness-Garcia are brought to justice, and that everyone can set politics aside and come together against this terrifying attack for the safety of their community.
Read more on the attack below the jump.Lyda Ness-Garcia provided the following statement late Monday:
“Today, two unknown assailants physically attacked me at my home and threatened my family. I thank god that my family and I are safe, and I am deeply appreciative of the swift and thorough response of the El Paso PD and the Texas Rangers.
“The attackers made clear that their motives were political, but because this is an active law enforcement matter, I will not go in to further details as to the nature of the attack. I ask that anyone with any knowledge on this matter please contact the El Paso Police Department or the Texas Rangers. My family and I thank you for your prayers and your support.”
Her opponent, incumbent Marisa Marquez released this statement: “I'm sorry this happened to her and her family. This has no place in politics and I hope the investigation unfolds quickly. I'm sure I echo the sentiments of all candidates when I say that we stand ready to assist in any way possible.”
With the added tension of politics, there is a tendency for people to erase these very real situations that happen to people. And unfortunately, for many women who face violence or assault, they are emphatically dismissed much more frequently than their male counterparts. Any person who resorts to victim blaming or mocking of this very scary and real situation should be ashamed.
Hopefully, the El Paso community and beyond will treat this case with the resolve any type of harassment or assault should be.