Texas Rep. Veronica Escobar to give Spanish-language Democratic response to State of the Union

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer have announced that Rep. Veronica Escobar of Texas will deliver the Spanish-language Democratic response to Donald Trump’s State of the Union speech next month.

“In the House of Representatives, she is making a difference for El Pasoans and for all Americans, as she fights to end the gun violence epidemic and to protect children and families at the southwest border,” Pelosi said in a statement. “Her values and vision beautifully represent our party and our country, and we look forward to hearing her positive message of progress.”

As noted by Pelosi in the statement, Escobar made history as one of the first Latinas to be elected to represent Texas in Congress, alongside her colleague (and manager in Donald Trump’s impeachment trial) Rep. Sylvia Garcia. Like many of her freshman colleagues, Escobar has made a powerful mark in Congress during her first year in office. 

Following the white supremacist terror attack in El Paso last year, Escobar filled the presidential void to become a comforter-in-chief to her distraught community while condemning the kind of rhetoric that influenced the attack. When Trump asked her to join him during his visit to El Paso, she declined, saying, “I refuse to be an accessory.” Escobar has also been a compassionate advocate for immigrant families, and has helped lead investigations into some of the most harmful anti-immigrant policies from the Trump administration. 

This past November, Escobar was elected by her colleagues as the newest member of the House Democratic leadership team. “Congresswoman Escobar’s election to the Democratic House leadership is monumental for Latino representation in Congress,” Latino Victory Project said at the time. “Since day one, Escobar established herself as a steadfast, hard-working leader in the freshman class, whose penchant for consensus-building did not go unnoticed.”

“I am honored to be delivering the Democratic Spanish-language response to President Trump’s State of the Union and look forward to addressing our nation on the progress Democrats have made For the People,” said Escobar in the statement.  “Our diversity is our strength.  Now more than ever, Democrats will continue to celebrate our diversity, defend our democracy, and work for a more equal and just nation.”