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Carmen Llanes Pulido joins Austin mayoral race

A woman in a red shirt and another women in a yellow shirt with purple and red design on the collar stand together at a podium to address city leaders.
Julia Reihs
/
KUT News
Carmen Llanes Pulido, right, has joined the race to be Austin's next mayor.

Carmen Llanes Pulido, who leads the local advocacy group Go Austin/Vamos Austin, has joined the race for Austin mayor. GAVA has pushed for change around housing and other policies that focus on equity in Austin.

She will face former city council member Kathie Tovo, who announced her candidacy last week. Mayor Kirk Watson has not formally announced he is running but has said he intends to. Mayoral candidates can file for the Nov. 5 election through Aug. 19.

Llanes Pulido grew up in East Austin and has been a voice around quality of life issues, including affordable housing, disaster preparedness, and how those matters impact underserved communities.

Earlier this year, for example, she stood firm against the city’s changes to its land rules, or what has been dubbed HOME – an initiative aimed at creating more middle-class housing. She argued the initiative would lead to displacement and doesn’t actually create affordable housing. Instead, she said these housing programs should include an affordability component that requires some type of affordable housing.

In a written statement Llanes Pulido said she brings a fresh perspective and a commitment to community-driven governance.

“Many Austinites from diverse backgrounds have asked me to step up and run for office," she said. “There is a real craving for honest representation and common-sense solutions. People see a lack of transparency and a genuine problem with the influence that wealthy special interests wield. We need leadership that listens to the needs of people from all ends of the economic spectrum.”

Llanes Pulido, like Tovo, would be only the second woman to serve as mayor of Austin and the first in more than 40 years.

In November, Austin voters will also elect City Council representatives for Districts 2, 4, 6, 7 and 10.

Luz Moreno-Lozano is the Austin City Hall reporter at KUT. Got a tip? Email her at lmorenolozano@kut.org. Follow her on X @LuzMorenoLozano.
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