Two reasons are there to run for political office:
- Genuine desire to help others and make the world better
- A desire for power and money.
I recommend looking at Kira Davis’ school board campaign if you are searching for the latter. There are many examples of the latter, but this one is especially egregious. Re-examined recently, Congressman Henry Cuellar (D–TX) has in the past accepted donations from a Mexican Zetas drug cartel family.
This story began on February 2012 in San Antonio.
Federal agents raided Antonio Pena Arguelles’ Stone Oak-area house on February 8. They arrested the 56-year-old legal resident from Mexico and accused him of money laundering. A U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration agent filed an affidavit detailing the allegations against Pena Arguelles. It also made serious accusations against Yarrington.
An informant “described Antonio Peña Arguelles as a conduit between Mexican politicians, in particular Tomas Yarrington, and Zeta (drug cartel) members Miguel Treviño Morales and Heriberto Lazcano,” the agent wrote.
In the affidavit, Pena Arguelles was accused of funneling millions of dollars from Zetas to Yarrington as well as other elected officials.
Yarrington, a Mexican politician of long-standing, was lauded by Texas politicians during his time in office. In March 2021, he pleaded guilty to conspiracy and money laundering.
Referring to the article My San Antonio from February 2012:
The U.S. is also feeling the effects. U.S. Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-Laredo) and Webb County Sheriff Martin Cuellar spoke out to say they have returned or given charity campaign donations to Pena-Arguelles. This is the conduit between the cartels of Mexico and politicians.
Pena Arguelles donated $1,500 in 2007 to Martin Cuellar’s campaign. Armandina Pena, Antonio Pena’s former wife, also gave $1,000 in 2006 to Henry Cuellar’s re-election campaign.
Martin Cuellar had asked Pena Arguelles’ solicitor to return the money. He said that Colin Strother was the spokesperson and Henry Cuellar gave the money to charity. After learning that Pena Arguelles’ brother had been killed in Nuevo Laredo and that his killers left a note accusing them of working with Zetas, they did so last year.
Cuellar may seem squeaky clean, as he donated the money to charity. In January 2022, the FBI raided Cuellar’s Texas home to conduct an investigation that was later found to be connected to Cuellar’s ties to Azerbaijan. Multiple news agencies requested that the January 2022 warrant be unsealed in August 2022. It remains sealed to this day.
Cuellar, who is seeking re-election as the incumbent in his predominantly Hispanic district, is in a precarious position. Cassy Garcia, his Republican opponent, has been stomping on Cuellar over issues such as declaring that Nancy Pelosi would be his first vote if elected. Garcia is a solid candidate, having worked for Ted Cruz and Donald Trump. She is a woman of faith and a wife to a Border Patrol agent husband.
Garcia is a legit candidate for victory in November 2022’s election, even if he faces Cuellar, a moderate Democrat. This is a campaign to keep an eye on.