Nacogdoches Democratic, Republican delegates gearing up for stat - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

Nacogdoches Democratic, Republican delegates gearing up for state conventions

Pat Castella, a Democratic Party state delegate has her sights set on becoming a national delegate for Hillary Clinton. (Source: KTRE Staff) Pat Castella, a Democratic Party state delegate has her sights set on becoming a national delegate for Hillary Clinton. (Source: KTRE Staff)
Denise Lee, a Republican Party state delegate leaves next week for the Republican state convention to be held in Dallas. She wans to go to the national convention as a delegate. (Source: KTRE Staff) Denise Lee, a Republican Party state delegate leaves next week for the Republican state convention to be held in Dallas. She wans to go to the national convention as a delegate. (Source: KTRE Staff)
NACOGDOCHES, TX (KTRE) -

With the primaries almost over, it's time to look ahead at the state and national conventions.
As you know - politically minded East Texans are often state delegates. Some have their eyes set on becoming national delegates.

East Texas News met with two state delegates from Nacogdoches who are running campaigns of their own.

"I first started getting interested in Republican politics in the era of Ronald Reagan,” said Denise Lee, a Republican state delegate.

Denise Lee remains a devoted party member. She is one of 29 Republican state delegates from Nacogdoches County. They along with their alternates will travel to Dallas next week for the Texas Republican Convention.

At this level, they're bound to Ted Cruz. In addition, Lee has her own personal campaign that starts with a speech.

"Probably about 150 people will be in our congressional district, 150, maybe 200 and I'll have to stand up, and tell why I feel that I should be one of the delegates or the alternates to the national convention,” Lee said.

Across Nacogdoches at the Democratic Party headquarters, Pat Castella has her sights on becoming a national delegate for Hillary Clinton. The New Deal Irish Democrat is intrigued to be a part of history in the making.

"As a woman who came through the women's revolution and all that entailed, I would like to see a woman elected president,” said Pat Castella, a Democratic state delegate. “That's not my reason for Hillary, but it's my reason for wanting to be part of the historic moment."

There's a Bernie Sanders state delegate from Nacogdoches County, too. Between now and the Democratic state convention in June, they'll campaign for support to become national delegates. Castella, just like the candidate she supports, has her own website.  

"I know how hard I work and I can illicit the different things I have done and that's why I do believe I have a chance,” Castella said.

Both women are aware national delegates could face intense persuasion from presidential campaigns should delegates reach the point where they're no longer bound to a candidate.  

"It's not about theatrics or lobbying, it's about the issues,” Lee said.

One of them also sees it as the chance to mark something off a bucket list.

"I'll go if they just put me on the janitorial staff,” Castella said with a laugh. “I just want to be there.”

Both women said they'll be watching the Indiana primary results tonight. It may be decisive race for some candidates in each party.

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