Candidate Greg Brockhouse addresses Nirenberg’s pandemic response, Proposition B during mayoral forum

Mayoral hopeful says he would not have shut down San Antonio, supported mask mandate if he were mayor

SAN ANTONIO – San Antonio mayoral candidate Greg Brockhouse drew sharp contrasts from Mayor Ron Nirenberg during Wednesday evening’s KSAT, San Antonio Report and Bexar Facts forum.

After narrowly losing to Nirenberg in 2019, the former District 6 councilman is hoping for a better result this time in a crowded race that features 14 candidates. But Brockhouse faces a steeper uphill battle than he did before — not only is he outspent by the Nirenberg campaign, but he does not have the endorsements of the police and fire unions like he did two years ago.

Despite that, he’s confident in his chances, he said.

“Look, the rank and file of firefighters and police officers overwhelmingly support me,” Brockhouse said. “I don’t worry about that. I’m running to be the mayor of the entire city of San Antonio.”

The candidate has instead focused on getting his message directly to the voters as Nirenberg has refused to debate with him.

“It’s unfortunate that he’s doing a disservice and disrespecting the voters in this manner,” Brockhouse said.

On policy, Brockhouse said he would have handled the pandemic differently had he been mayor.

“What I would have done is never shut down the city of San Antonio,” Brockhouse said.

Though he said he would have followed the science, Brockhouse also said he would have “not promoted mandatory masks.”

Whereas Nirenberg has refused to take a public stance on Proposition B, which would undo police collective bargaining rights, Brockhouse came out firmly against it.

“This is a critical and monumental decision whichever way you look at it on the future of San Antonio ... Ron Nirenberg is refusing to take a position. So he’s abdicating a leadership role and making a call on where he stands. Citizens want leadership,” Brockhouse said.

Brockhouse tried to find common ground on policing, saying you can support police and Black Lives Matter.

“I think you can care about young men and women of color and keeping them out of jail, while also recognizing that we can have a fantastic police department,” he said.

When asked if there is systemic racism in policing, Brockhouse said no.

“I don’t believe we’re a systemically racist or broken society, and I’ll stand up across this nation about the wonderful people we have,” Brockhouse said. “I do believe that we have a system that needs to be fixed that respects and honors people of colors and makes sure they’re all treated equally.”

In his final pitch to voters, Brockhouse said he can admit he doesn’t have all the answers, but that he would be ready to serve San Antonio.

“I know how great we are if we bring the team together, we can get it done,” he said.

Early voting begins on April 19.

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