KINGSVILLE–A Coastal Bend state leader decided to switch parties and signed on as a Republican as he begins his trek to get re-elected in District 43.
J.M. Lozano, who is from Kingsville, was touted for his work as a freshman representative and said the Democratic party wasn’t for him.
“In the words of President Ronald Reagan, ‘I didn’t leave the Democratic Party; the Democratic Party left me,’” he said in press reports.
He made the announcement in Austin with Governor Rick Perry and State Attorney General Greg Abbott by his side.
He claimed he would get bullied by Democrats into voting for their agenda and they mistreated him for voting conservative.
The state rep also talked about growing up in Jim Wells County where most residents are pro-life, pro-business and pro-oil and gas exploration.
Lozano, who was born in Guadalajara, Mexico, said he was inspired to make the party move by George P. Bush, the son of former Florida Governor Jeb Bush and the nephew of former President George W. Bush.
Democrats noted that it was only a few months ago Lozano was going to step aside for the party in this district to allow Abel Herrero to run when one of the first redistricting maps were sent out in January. He planned to run in a neighboring county and move his home from Kingsville.
Lozano is the third Hispanic lawmaker to switch parties with the biggest name being State Rep. Aaron Pena of Edinburg.
He will face Bill T. Wilson in the May primary. If he wins, he will face off against Yvonne Gonzalez-Toureilles, a Democrat who lost her seat in a GOP landslide two years ago.