The seat for Congressional District 23 is going to the runoff election, with U.S. Rep. Tony Gonzales and firearms influencer Brandon Herrera competing in the race.

Congressional District 23 is a rural, majority-Hispanic area that encompasses western San Antonio and contains a large span of the Texas-Mexico border—including Uvalde, Eagle Pass, and El Paso County.

In the five-way race, Gonzales received 45.08 percent of the vote while Herrera made second-place with 24.66 percent.

Gonzales’ named priorities are border security, crime control, veteran support, mental health, education and parental involvement, and defending Constitutional rights.

He has received endorsements from the National Right to Life, Texas Farm Bureau AgFund, Texas & Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association, Texas Alliance for Life, Combined Law Enforcement Associations of Texas, and Border Commerce Security Council.

Gonzales has received vote ratings of 82 from Heritage Action, 85 from Club for Growth, 0 from FreedomWorks, and 64 from the American Conservative Union.

Herrera announced his campaign in August 2023 and has focused criticism on Gonzales’ voting record, specifically on the matter of gun control. Previously, Gonzales was the only Texas Republican in the U.S. House to support the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, a law meant to enforce stricter background checks for gun purchases. 

In September 2023, Gonzales also voted against defunding Military drag shows and LGBT “pride month” events, being one of 18 Republicans to do so. Gonzales was censured by the Republican Party of Texas last March for failing to uphold the party’s principles.

Herrera’s campaign priorities include securing the border, lowering taxes, improving veterans’ healthcare, defending gun rights, protecting life, enacting term limits, protecting school choice, opposing funding for foreign wars, and funding social security and Medicare.

He has been endorsed by Texas Gun Rights.

Gonzales’ campaign has received almost $2 million in campaign donations, while Herrera’s has raised about $600,000.

The runoff election is May 28.

Amelia McKenzie

Amelia is a senior at Liberty University in Virginia. She is studying Digital Journalism and is currently a fellow with Texas Scorecard.