WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Rep. Solomon P. Ortiz, D-Corpus Christi, filed the necessary paperwork in Austin Monday, seeking the Democratic nomination for U.S. Representative.
Ortiz is seeking re-election to Texas's 27th Congressional District, a seat he has held since 1983. The district was created in 1982 in the southeast corner of Texas and consists of two major population centers, Corpus Christi and Brownsville.
"The nation we all love has made remarkable progress this year on the domestic front, but our national security remains in a crisis," said Ortiz, who is chairman of the House Armed Services Committee's subcommittee on Military Readiness and Military Construction.
Ortiz also serves on the House Resources Committee and chairs the House Border Caucus. He is dean of both the Texas Congressional delegation and the Congressional Hispanic Caucus.
Ortiz announced his intention to seek re-election in September in his hometown of Robstown.
"The Democratic Congress this country elected in 2006 faced monumental challenges on two fronts; economic security and national security," Ortiz said. "We've raised the minimum wage for middle class working families, after 10 years of foot-dragging by the Republicans. Raising the minimum wage was critical to fighting for the forgotten middle class. Since 2000, prices of education, gasoline and healthcare all significantly outpaced inflation, crushing family budgets. This makes a real difference for South Texans.
"We made it easier to go to college by reducing excessive federal subsidies paid to lenders in the college loan industry by $20.9 billion in a bill that also includes $750 million in federal budget deficit reduction. Educating our children and our workforce of tomorrow is the single silver bullet that can improve the lives of Americans, improve our economy, and strengthen our nation.
"What remains to be fixed are the components of our national security - right now our military is on the verge of being broken. Our soldiers are dying out there in two separate wars. This Congress has been able to begin to improve the readiness of our military that was so badly damaged by the war in Iraq.
"While Democrats were clearly elected to begin to move our troops away from Iraq in an orderly and responsible re-deployment, and back to the hunt for al Qaeda and bin Laden, we do not have a veto-proof majority. This is what keeps me up at night. Defeating al Qaeda remains the urgent, overarching, unfinished business of this Congress and this nation, and we can't do that until we responsibly rotate our troops out of Iraq and back to finding al Qaeda in Afghanistan and Pakistan."