Monica De La Cruz Hernandez advanced from the Republican Party primary in Texas’ 34th Congressional District on March 1, 2022. As of 7:45 a.m. ET on March 2, 2022, De La Cruz Hernandez had received 56 percent of the vote and Mauro Garza was second with 15 percent. Nine candidates ran in the primary election. Incumbent Vicente Gonzalez Jr. (D) ran for re-election to Congress in Texas’ 34th Congressional District.
De La Cruz Hernandez is an insurance agent from Edinburg. She was the 2020 Republican nominee in the district and lost to Gonzalez 50.5% to 47.6%. De La Cruz Hernandez’s key campaign issues included immigration policy, investments in oil and natural gas, and school choice. Former President Donald Trump and 16 Republican members of Congress—including U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.)—endorsed De La Cruz Hernandez.
Garza is a businessman from San Antonio. His campaign focused on fiscal policy, border security, and funding for police and the military. Garza was primarily a self-funded candidate, who loaned his campaign $195,000 as of January 2022 according to the Federal Election Commission. In 2020, Garza lost to Rep. Joaquin Castro (D) in Texas’ 20th Congressional District 64.7% to 33.1%. In the 2018 election cycle, Garza did not advance from an 18-candidate Republican primary in Texas’ 21st Congressional District.
According to The Texas Tribune, Texas’ 15th Congressional District became more favorable to Republicans as a result of redistricting. Joe Biden (D) won the district by two percentage points in the 2020 presidential election. Trump would have won the new district by three percentage points. As of February 2022, three race rating outlets considered the general election to be either Lean or Tilt Republican.