Kaur fundraising skyrockets in D1 council race against incumbent Bravo

Early voting for June 10 runoff ends Tuesday; D1 and D7 city council seats on the ballot

San Antonio – District 1 Councilman Mario Bravo’s biggest challenger got a big fundraising boost after finishing ahead of him in the May 6 election.

The most recent campaign finance reports show Sukh Kaur collected $60,000 in political contributions between April 27 and May 31, compared to the nearly $51,000 taken in by Councilman Mario Bravo.

Kaur out-raised the incumbent District 1 councilman during that month-long period for the first time in the race and nearly matched the $65,000 she had raised in the nearly six months leading up to the election.

Kaur’s recent fundraising success follows her success at the ballot box. She collected 34% of the vote in the May 6 election, while Bravo, who won his first term by unseating an incumbent, finished with 26%.

After gathering more votes than incumbent D1 Councilman Mario Bravo in the May 6 election, Sukh Kaur raised nearly as much money as she had before the election (KSAT)

Political strategist Christian Archer says Kaur is now getting unsolicited donations, and “clearly, the momentum is behind her.”

“In terms of total number of contributors but also being able to out-raise the incumbent -- it’s a powerful endorsement for her campaign that she’s been able to do it not only with votes but also now with contributions,” Archer said.

Bravo was previously a project manager with the Environmental Defense Fund, and Kaur owns a company, EDreimagined, that works with public charter schools.

Campaign finance reports show that Kaur has received support from the Charter Schools Now PAC and the San Antonio Equity Alliance PAC. Meanwhile, the San Antonio Alliance of Teachers and Support Personnel PAC has put its weight behind Bravo.

READ MORE: Bravo relying on council record, Kaur focusing on basics in District 1 runoff

Though Archer says the money matters, it’s not the only metric, and he expects the District 1 race to be close.

“In San Antonio, you can still win a race with Shoe Leather Express, and that is knocking on doors and talking to voters,” Archer said.

The turnout for District 1 and District 7 races is all but guaranteed to be lower than the May 6 election, which drew out 14,200 District 1 voters and 14,900 District 7 voters.

Fundraising looks more lopsided in the District 7 council race, where Marina Alderete Gavito continues to bring in money. Gavito raised another $50,000 in the most recent reporting period, more than five times as much as the $9,000 Dan Rossiter reported.

Marina Alderete Gavito brought in more than $5 for every $1 Dan Rossiter did in the most recent campaign finance reporting period (KSAT)

READ MORE: Political newcomers Gavito and Rossiter vie for open D7 seat

The San Antonio Equity Alliance PAC is supporting Gavito, and she also got help from the Better SA PAC ahead of the May 6 election. Rossiter has not reported any PAC support.

Gavito is the former head of SA Digital Connects and the daughter of former San Antonio Councilman and current Alamo Colleges District Trustee Joe Alderete, Jr.

Rossiter is an engineer and was a program manager at Southwest Research Institute until he resigned to run for council.

“Even though this is Marina’s first time running for office, it’s almost like she’s got the power of incumbency,” Archer said. “The Alderete name in District 7 carries a lot of weight.”

But votes at the ballot box carry a lot more.


Early voting ends at 8 p.m. on Tuesday, June 6. With only two council districts on the ballot, there are only six early voting locations.

Voting on Saturday, June 10, will be from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Voters from either district can cast a ballot at one of the 49 vote centers.

About the Authors:

Garrett Brnger is a reporter with KSAT 12.

Luis Cienfuegos is a photographer at KSAT 12.