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The Case Against Monica De La Cruz

“The allegations of abusive behavior towards a child leveled against Monica De La Cruz are disturbing. Combined with her adherence to conspiracy theories and her fanatical opposition to common-sense ideas like investing in infrastructure or pandemic relief for small businesses, it is clear that De La Cruz is not fit for office. The Rio Grande Valley deserves a member of Congress who will set aside party politics to fight for hard-working families and be a true voice for South Texas. That will never be Monica De La Cruz.” – DCCC Chairman Sean Patrick Maloney

To: Interested Parties
From: Monica Robinson, DCCC Regional Press Secretary
Date: March 02, 2022
Subject: The Case Against Monica De La Cruz

Embattled Republican Monica De La Cruz may have scraped out a win in her bruising primary — but she enters the general election having burned through most of her warchest, dogged by scandal, and primed to lose this race in Texas’s 15th Congressional District.

Monica De La Cruz’s fitness to hold office is under serious scrutiny after court documents alleged that she committed “verbal and physical abuse” against her teenage stepdaughter. In November of 2021, court documents and investigative reporting from the Washington Post painted a disturbing picture: De La Cruz allegedly had been “cruel and aggressive” toward her stepdaughter, including “verbal abuse and pinching the child to stop her from crying.”

“In one incident described in the petition for divorce, Hernandez says that on a recent Sunday at church, his daughter began crying after some coffee was spilled. He alleges that De La Cruz took her to the bathroom and pinched her to stop her from crying, rather than try to console her.” Washington Post, 11/09/2021

Hostile text conversations submitted to the court revealed that De La Cruz used “vulgar” and “disturbing” language about her stepdaughter, and allegedly “said she would divorce [her husband] if he brought the child, who has at times been hospitalized, back to live at their home.” In the wake of these allegations, a Texas judge ruled that “De La Cruz must continue living away from her family home until after the March 1 primary.”

Confidence in NRCC Young Gun and “star recruit” Monica De La Cruz has been rocked in the wake of the allegations and a seemingly endless parade of lies and misinformation on the campaign trail. As new details about De La Cruz’s alleged treatment of a minor in her care continue to emerge, Republicans in South Texas have been left wondering if they should look the other way – or hedge their bets on someone new.

Enter Mauro Garza.

Undeterred by De La Cruz’s three consecutive years of running for Congress and her vows of support from “establishment” national Republicans like Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, eight other Republicans eagerly jumped into the primary to take her on. Among them was perennial loser, self-funder, and carpetbagger Mauro Garza. Garza shouldn’t have been a meaningful threat to establishment pick De La Cruz – but her fellow conspiracy theorist gained significant ground on the NRCC-anointed candidate with a small TV buy  attacking De La Cruz for her delinquent tax payments, unpaid loans, and for having “failed at everything she’s done.” Suddenly faced with the danger of not winning her primary outright, De La Cruz frantically spent down her warchest, spending nearly half a million dollars, including on TV ads, in the first 50 days of 2022. Kevin McCarthy’s super PAC also swooped in to her rescue in the eleventh hour, going up with a radio ad attacking Mauro Garza on Monica De La Cruz’s behalf.

Broke and embattled, De La Cruz now faces the toughest campaign of her political lifetime. But even if voters could overlook the disturbing allegations of her treatment toward her young stepdaughter, De La Cruz’s extremist views and bizarre conspiracy theories are enough to make any South Texan sprint in the other direction. In addition to repeatedly promoting the unfounded conspiracy that the 2020 election was rigged (including, predictably, the one that she lost), De La Cruz has come out on the wrong side of every issue important to Texans. She’s quick to let you know she vehemently opposes fixing our roads and bridges, good-paying infrastructure jobs, and pandemic relief programs that kept small businesses open and employees on payroll.

So what does De La Cruz support? It’s hard to pin down, especially when she declares she’s “not doing any interviews” with local press. But permanent tax breaks for massive corporations and being a rubber stamp for her Washington establishment backers are likely to be at the top of her toxic agenda.

Fortunately, South Texans will have a different choice this November. Monica De La Cruz’s moment in the sun will soon come to an end when voters reject her at the ballot box and keep Texas’s 15th Congressional District in Democratic hands.


“A star Republican congressional candidate in Texas was accused last month by her estranged husband in court documents of ‘cruel and aggressive conduct’ toward his 14-year-old daughter, including verbal abuse and pinching the child to stop her from crying.” [Washington Post, 11/09/21]

HEADLINE: Top GOP congressional candidate in Texas accused of abusing teenage daughter of estranged husband [Washington Post, 11/09/21]

HEADLINE: Texas GOP’s Rising ‘Young Gun’ Accused of ‘Cruel and Aggressive Conduct’ Toward Child [Newsweek, 11/10/21]

HEADLINE: Allegations of a Child Pinched, a Dog Custody Dispute, Mean Texts: Inside a Texas Candidate’s Bitter Divorce [PEOPLE, 01/14/22]

“‘The text messages concerning her attitude towards his child are very disturbing. Any time you’re using f-words about a child and saying that if she comes to our home, the marriage is over — that’s very disturbing.’” [PEOPLE, 01/14/22]

The text messages showed that De La Cruz threatened to end the marriage in August if Hernandez brought his daughter home, and directed a four-letter expletive at Hernandez, his ex-wife and their daughter […] ‘Not very congressional,’ her husband responded in the text message thread. ‘You don’t mean that about me and my daughter.’ ‘I mean every word,’ De La Cruz shot back.” [Washington Post, 01/12/22]

HEADLINE: 12 GOP ‘Young Guns’ embrace Trump’s election falsehoods [CNN, 10/28/21]

HEADLINE: Is asking about someone’s COVID vaccine status a HIPAA violation? [KVEO, 07/24/21]

“Insurance agent Monica De La Cruz, the apparent frontrunner in the March 1 GOP primary, has released her first TV ad of the race […] There she features a notorious photo of three shirtless and tattooed men that’s long been a staple of racist GOP ads. That picture, by the way, was not taken in the United States any time recently but rather in a prison in El Salvador a decade ago by British photographer Adam Hinton.” [Daily Kos, 01/14/22]


As COVID-19 ravaged the nation and cut short hundreds of thousands of American lives, South Texas was one of the hardest hit regions in the country. In 2021, House Democrats passed – without a single Republican vote – the American Rescue Plan, which “puts money into families’ pockets, funds the refitting of classrooms so students can return to school, and helps cities and counties recover from the economic downturn.” As the funding helped local governments ramp up the distribution of vaccines and put money in the pockets of American families, Monica De La Cruz raged against the relief package using debunked Republican talking points, claiming “none of this had anything to do with fighting COVID-19.” She also bizarrely claimed that the American Rescue Plan had led to “the destruction of small businesses,” despite the fact that landmark programs like the Restaurant Revitalization Fund were helping small businesses in the Rio Grande Valley keep their doors open and their employees on payroll. Monica De La Cruz’s preferred approach to crushing the pandemic: Fend for yourself.

More than 70,000 retired workers in TX-15 rely on the Social Security payments they’ve paid into their entire lives. But if it were up to Monica De La Cruz, Social Security as we know it could be gutted – and with it, Texans’ chances of a dignified retirement. De La Cruz supported privatizing Social Security, risking American seniors’ guaranteed retirement benefits on the stock market.

Thanks to the House Democrats’ infrastructure plan, South Texas is soon to see a once-in-a-lifetime investment in roads, bridges, pipes, ports, and broadband. It’s expected to bring good-paying jobs and economic growth to the Rio Grande Valley, and will “pay for much-needed repairs” across Texas. But that economic boost and investment in South Texas’s aging infrastructure would have been nothing but a pipe dream if Monica De La Cruz had her way. More than 200 Republicans voted against it – and among them would have been De La Cruz, who slammed the few Republicans who voted for the infrastructure investment and lied about what was in the bill. “Rep. Gonzalez is more worried about your internet connection than the ONE MILLION ILLEGALS,” De La Cruz complained, “Instead of being ‘focused on connectivity’, he should focus in what is REALLY happening in #tx15‼️‼️” Apparently, De La Cruz isn’t aware that 53.7% of TX-15 households were without wireline broadband, while 28.7% had no home internet access of any kind. Opposing jobs, bridges, internet, and roads for Texas: Not the winning issue De La Cruz thinks it is.

Education is the path to the American dream for countless Texas families – whether it’s a four-year degree, trade school, or community college. The South Texas public school system mentors the next generation of workers and ensures they have the tools they need to raise their families and build a life. But Monica De La Cruz opposed a pay increase for local teachers in TX-15 during the pandemic. As parents, students, and teachers navigated virtual learning combined with in-person instruction, De La Cruz belittled their work, calling teaching nothing more than a “babysitting service” and saying a teacher pay raise during the pandemic was “crazy.”

Rather than making sure all families in South Texas have the opportunity to build wealth and a path to the American Dream, Monica De La Cruz’s top priority is helping the rich get richer. The Republican Party’s 2017 tax break for massive corporations and billionaires has been projected to increase the national debt by $1.9 trillion over the next decade – and could give S&P 500 companies a huge $1.64 trillion “windfall” with taxpayers footing the bill. Monica De La Cruz vowed to make that tax break permanent.

To Monica De La Cruz, democracy, law, and order are merely suggestions to be thrown away if they get in between her and her political ambitions. In 2020, De La Cruz showed she was willing to shamelessly lie and cheat to get elected. She’s one of at least twelve “prized recruits” from the NRCC that has embraced Donald Trump’s “big lie” and “sought to undermine the legitimacy of the past elections.” De La Cruz has repeatedly publicly questioned the 2020 election results in Texas, falsely claiming that voter fraud “cost her the race” in 2020 and asserting, without evidence, that Texans cast ballots without being on the voter roll.

The path to victory in Texas’s 15th Congressional District remains clear for a Democratic candidate. Texas’s 15th Congressional District is located in the cities of McAllen and Edinburg in the Rio Grande Valley and rural counties to the north. The district is 78.9% Hispanic/Latino (per Census Voting Age Population), and, even under the new district lines, has reliably voted for mostly Democratic candidates. Beto O’Rourke would have carried the district in 2018, earning 56.0% of the major party vote, and Hillary Clinton would have won it in 2016 with 57.1%. Congressional races over the past several cycles would have been Democratic victories, including in 2020 when Democratic candidates (Reps. Gonzalez, Cuellar, and Vela, Jr.) earned 51.2% of the major party vote under the new lines.

Last election, Texas Democrats put public health over politics and hit pause on face-to-face organizing to keep volunteers, staff, and voters safe during the pandemic. Now, we’re on course to resume in-person organizing to reach South Texas communities and mobilize Democratic voters earlier than ever before. The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee has invested in organizing in TX-15 earlier than any previous election cycle, including full-time staff who will knock doors, make calls, meet with community leaders, register people to vote, and build inroads with Texas’s diverse electorate, including Hispanic voters.

Democrats aren’t taking South Texas for granted, and the enthusiasm on the ground shows that voters are eager to support the party of results. Texas’s 15th District will stay in Democratic hands this November.


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