Gina Ortiz Jones wants to build a better Texas.
The Iraq War veteran and out lesbian is campaigning for U.S. Congress in the Lone Star State’s 23rd congressional district. She faces three opponents in March’s Democratic primary election.
“As an intelligence officer in the U.S. Air Force, Gina served under the military’s ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ policy, and saw first-hand how discrimination affects good order, and discipline as well as military readiness,” reads a statement on her campaign website.
“In Congress, Gina will be a champion for equal rights for all and protections from discrimination based on race, ethnicity, sex, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, disability and religion.”
Jones, 36, left her job as a director in the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative in June amid frustration with the Trump administration.
“The type of people that were brought in to be public servants were interested in neither the public nor the service,” Jones told the Huffington Post. “That, to me, was a sign that I’m going to have to serve in a different way.”
A first generation Filipina-American, Jones is endorsed by the Victory Fund, Emily’s List and VoteVets. If she takes the Democratic nomination, Jones will face incumbent Republican Congressman Will Hurd in November’s general election. Texas’ 23rd district hugs the state’s southwestern border with Mexico and its voters are almost 70 percent Hispanic.