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Juan “Sonny” Palacios

Edinburg ISD election Palacios families suffer setback

The well-known Palacios families of Edinburg, who for many years have successfully influenced the election and appointment of their allies and relatives to positions of political power, suffered a setback with the victory last Tuesday (Nov. 6) by newcomer Dominga “Minga” Vela over two-term incumbent Juan “Sonny” Palacios for Edinburg School Board.

The Palacios families, however, still hold considerable prestige and power in politics and business. Ricardo P. Rodríguez, Jr. is Hidalgo County District Attorney, Renee Rodríguez-Betancourt is judge of the 449th Hidalgo County District Court, her husband J.R. Betancourt is the former Mayor Pro Tem of the Edinburg City Council (he did not seek reelection in 2017), and Terry Palacios, who is law partner with former and longtime Mayor Richard García, is Edinburg Municipal Court Judge.

According to unofficial results, Vela, a top administrator with the Edinburg school district, secured 53.5 percent of the vote in her bid for Place 1 of the Edinburg School Board. Sonny Palacios is an attorney whose only previous political loss came in the 2016 Democratic Party primary runoff against now-Congressman Vicente González, D-Edinburg.



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