The Latest: Valdez says government shouldn't 'create fear'
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AUSTIN, Texas — The Latest on Dallas County Sherriff Lupe Valdez resigning to run for Texas governor (all times local):
Democrat Lupe Valdez has signed paperwork to run for Texas governor, saying the state's Republican-controlled government shouldn't keep "putting a spin on lies and creating fear."
Valdez used fluent Spanish barely a minute into a speech at Democratic headquarters in Austin attended by a handful of supporters.
She described being the eighth child of "migrant farmworkers" and said her family sometimes had to choose between buying food and paying rent.
Valdez said Texans in the country illegally live in constant fear of deportation, and that Texas elected officials have left them feeling "attacked for who they are, where they come from."
Valdez resigned as Dallas County sheriff to launch a longshot bid against incumbent Republican Greg Abbott.
Abbott declined comment, but announced that he'd won the Dallas Police Association Pac's endorsement.
Texas' first Hispanic female sheriff says she will run against Republican Gov. Greg Abbott in 2018.
Democrat Lupe Valdez has been the sheriff of Dallas County for 12 years. Her announcement Wednesday makes her the most prominent Democrat in the race after bigger names passed on trying to break Republicans' 22-year hold on the Texas governor's mansion.
The 70-year-old Valdez is an Army veteran and was Texas' first openly gay female sheriff. She's clashed with Abbott over federal immigration detainers and says opportunity is "out of reach" for many Texans.
Valdez will resign as sheriff to run for governor. She'll be an underdog in Texas, which hasn't elected a Democrat to a statewide office since 1994.
Several other lesser-known Democrats are also running. Abbott has no serious GOP challenger.