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Meet the Candidates: Leticia Van De Putte

Janis Daemmrich for The Texas Tribune

Last spring, as Republican lawmakers tried to defuse Democratic State Sen. Wendy Davis’ 10 hour filibuster on abortion restrictions in Texas, a fellow Senator named Leticia Van de Putte attempted to get the attention of the presiding officer.  

"Mr. President," Van De Putte shouted, "at what point must a female senator raise her hand or her voice to be recognized over the male colleagues in the room?"

The remark won Van De Putte some attention, all right.  

As calls from rank and file Democrats rose for Wendy Davis to run for governor, many urged Van De Putte to pitch her hat into the ring for the No. 2 spot.  Last November, she did just that. Van De Putte is running unopposed for the Democratic nomination for Lieutenant Governor. She'll face the winner of the Republican primary in November.

A San Antonio pharmacist by trade and a veteran of the state house and senate (and a proud 'abuela', as she describes herself), Van De Putte says her entry into politics was sparked by frustration with the status quo in Texas politics.  In a wide ranging 'get to know you' conversation hosted by KUT's Senior Political Correspondent Ben Philpott and Texas Standard host David Brown, Van De Putte talks about her San Antonio ties, the state's $14 billion 'rainy day fund', Texas' infrastructure, education funding, and womens' reproductive rights. 

We have invited all of the top candidates in the major statewide races to join us for these conversations, and we’ll continue to share excerpts on the air along with extended versions here at  The last day for early voting in the primaries is Friday, February 28. 

David entered radio journalism thanks to a love of storytelling, an obsession with news, and a desire to keep his hair long and play in rock bands. An inveterate political junkie with a passion for pop culture and the romance of radio, David has reported from bases in Washington, London, Los Angeles, and Boston for Monitor Radio and for NPR, and has anchored in-depth public radio documentaries from India, Brazil, and points across the United States and Europe. He is, perhaps, known most widely for his work as host of public radio's Marketplace. Fulfilling a lifelong dream of moving to Texas full-time in 2005, Brown joined the staff of KUT, launching the award-winning cultural journalism unit "Texas Music Matters."
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