The political party switch of Kleberg County Attorney Kira Talip Sanchez from Democrat to Republican was applauded by Hispanic Republicans of Texas PAC at their 2024 election season kickoff event.
Sanchez, citing the increasing border crisis in Texas as a reason for her switch, said in a statement that she believes the GOP’s policies of law and order, safety, and backing the blue “best align with my values and the values of the citizens of Kleberg County.”
Located in south Texas, Kleberg County borders the Gulf of Mexico and, while historically leaning blue, the county voted for former President Donald Trump in 2020.
The switch comes as the federal government finds itself mired in a lawsuit with the state of Texas over its floating buoy barrier on the Rio Grande. Gov. Greg Abbott has asserted that the barrier is a necessary measure to address the unprecedented migration crisis.
“Every day, we are meeting with people who have voted for Democrats for decades, but that this is no longer their Abuelos’ Democratic Party,” said Hispanic Republicans of Texas President Cassy Garcia in a statement. “It’s become too radical, elitist, and out of touch with our values.”
Customs and Border Protection (CBP) reported that there were 183,503 migrant encounters at the southern border in July – a steep increase from the 144,566 seen in June. In response, the Biden Administration announced the deployment of tens of thousands of border personnel in order to manage the influx of migrants at the border.
The Republican-formed Kleberg County party meanwhile has welcomed Sanchez’s switch, noting that it is part of a larger trend of voters abandoning the Democratic Party in favor of the GOP.
“We are seeing more and more voters turn to the Republican Party for their values and principles,” said Tom Podberg, chairman of the county’s Republican Party. “Kira Talip Sanchez’s switch to the GOP is just one example of this growing trend.”
Sanchez has vowed to dedicate her efforts to enforcing the law with Kleberg County law enforcement while advocating for conservative values.
“Her experience working with Kleberg County law enforcement and her passion for conservative values makes her an excellent fit for the Republican Party,” Podberg said. “We’re excited to see what she can accomplish with us.”