Incumbents unseated after runoffs – San Benito News


Cameron County residents will find themselves with new leaders in key elected positions in 2025 as determined by a competitive runoff election held on Tuesday stemming from the March 5 Primaries.

Running on the Democratic slate, incumbents Eric Garza, who was looking to retain his position as Cameron County Sheriff, and longtime Cameron County Tax Assessor-Collector Antonio “Tony” Yzaguirre, Jr., fell short to newcomers Manuel “Manny” Trevino and Eddie Garcia, respectfully.

In the sheriff’s race, Garza garnered 4,395 unofficial votes (44.80%) to Trevino’s unofficial 5,415 (55.20%) on Tuesday. Trevino now moves on to the General Election in November where he faces Republican nominee for sheriff Santiago “Jimmy” Manrrique who ran unopposed in March.

On Super Tuesday, Garza failed to muster enough votes to avoid the runoff, as he tallied 6,711 votes for 36.74% to Trevino’s 4,808 votes (26.32%). Jesus Rosas, Jr. came away with 3,970 votes and Ronnie Saenz wooed 2,777 votes (15.20%). Upon his failed bid for sheriff, Rosas became a staunch Trevino supporter.

In the Tax Assessor-Collector’s race, Garcia won on Tuesday with 5,064 unofficial votes (52.06%) to Yzaguirre’s unofficial 4,663 (47.94%). Garcia will move on to November where he’ll face Republican Jesus “Rami” Martinez. Martinez ran unopposed in March on the Republican ticket.

On Super Tuesday, Yzaguirre captured 45.38% of the votes or 8,236 compared to Garcia’s 6,464 votes for 35.62%. The third candidate, Jose Luis “Skippy” Davila collected 3,448 votes in March for 19% of the tally.

Yzaguirre, who has been the county’s tax assessor-collector for the past 34 years, posted the following on social media, “As this chapter of the campaign comes to an end for me, I look back at all the accomplishments that we have achieved. When I took on this role, this office was far from what it is today. I would like to thank my family, friends, and supporters for always being by my side. I would like to thank each and every person who took the time out of their busy schedule to go out and vote.”

Yzaguirre went on to post, “I thank all employees and former employees who offered their support throughout the years. It means the world to me. Finally, I would like to extend the same piece of advice I received from my predecessor when I took office. It takes a dozen designers, hundreds of architects, and thousands of contractors and workers to build a bridge, but it only takes the town idiot to blow it up. I can only hope that the next person who takes on this role gives it their all and values the knowledge that the existing office staff has to offer. Cameron County deserves to have the excellent service that exists within this office.”

Garcia also took to social media to acknowledge his supporters. “I want to express my deepest gratitude to my friends, family, and the amazing voters of Cameron County for your unwavering support throughout this election. After 36 long years, we’ve finally taken back our office,” he posted.

“This victory is not just about me, but about the people of Cameron County who demanded change. Your votes were a resounding call for a new era of leadership, transparency, and progress. Thank you for trusting me. I promise to work tirelessly for our community and make you proud. Let’s celebrate this historic win and look forward to a brighter future for Cameron County,” he concluded.

For the Democrats, Precinct #3 Cameron County Constable Adrian Gonzalez went unopposed in March but must face Republican challenger Gilbert Garcia in the General Election. Garcia was also unopposed on the Republican ticket.

In another big Democratic race, Johnathan Gracia bested rival Ruben Cortez, Jr., 2,473 unofficial votes (66.73%) to Cortez’s 1,233 unofficial votes (33.27%) in a head-to-head race to vie for the District 37 State Representative nomination. Gracia will now advance to the General Election in November where he’ll face Republican incumbent Janie Lopez of San Benito, who ran unopposed in the Primaries.

In March, four Democratic candidates vied for the District 37 State House Representative post included Alex Dominguez, Cortez, Jr. and Gracia. Former San Benito Commissioner Carol Lynn Sanchez fell a distant fourth place with 1,240 votes or 19.72% of the tallied ballots.

Also on Super Tuesday, incumbent Democrat Vicente Gonzalez was unopposed for the District 34 State Rep. seat. He now faces Republican challenger Mayra Flores in November. Flores, a San Benito area resident who held the post before losing to Gonzalez, defeated three other Republican challengers on Super Tuesday to earn the Republican nomination for District 34 US Representative.

Countywide, the Republicans saw only one runoff race which was for District 15 Republican Party Chair which garnered a total of 40 votes. Mildreth Martinez walked away victorious in that race with 21votes (52.50%) to Stacy Bielstein’s 19 votes or 47.50% of the ballots casted Tuesday.

Cameron County Elections Administrator Remi Garza reported that, countywide, 18,943 total votes were casted in the Democratic Primary and 14,782 were casted in the Republican Primary on Super Tuesday.

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