Former Uvalde mayor wins bid to return to City Hall

Former mayor Cody Smith easily wins special election

Voters in Uvalde elected a new mayor on Tuesday.

Former mayor Cody Smith easily won the race, capturing 65% of the vote.

Coming in second with 33% of the vote was Kim Rubio, the mother of Lexi Rubio, one of the students killed in the Robb Elementary School shooting.

Uvalde CISD teacher Veronica Martinez came in third with 2% of the vote.

I am truly amazed and proud that Uvalde went out and voted. We were all good candidates, Win or learn, I put myself out there, and I will continue to build my political platform. Uvalde knows who Veronica Martinez is, and I will continue to move forward and make a difference in my community.

Veronica Martinez

Rubio said the election defeat won’t stop her fight for change in gun laws and to help unite the community.

”I care about my community. I see so much hurt and I want to be a part of helping that. I can still do that. And as far as why, I do everything for Lexi. Lexi is always with me, I take her no matter where I go,” Rubio said.

Smith, now a three-time mayor and former councilman, said that he’s planning on working with Rubio, the other victims’ families and the community on a path forward.

”There’s some of these people, that we’re going to have to hold up a while, but we all have rights and we all have responsibility. So, everybody is gonna need to take a long look at themselves and see what they can do to help this community,” he said.

When asked what he plans to do when the shooting investigation wraps up, Smith said he doesn’t have an answer for that right now.

Since this was a special election due to former mayor Don McLaughlin stepping down to run for state representative, Smith’s term will only last one year. He said he was planning on running for mayor in the regular election before McLaughlin’s announcement.

Live election results are embedded below.





Cody Smith
Kimberly Mata-Rubio
Veronica Martinez
100% of Voting Centers Reporting

(14 / 14)


All three have said they’re committed to helping unite Uvalde no matter what happens on election day.

Veronica Martinez

Martinez said she sees how divided the community is and wants to help bridge the gap and create understanding.

“I am going to have to be firm but fair and understanding at the same time, just like working at the school with the children,” Martinez said. “I decided to join the race for many reasons. One of them was to help our community, like everyone, you know, move forward.”

Kim Rubio

Rubio, who lost her daughter, Lexi, in the Robb Elementary tragedy in May 2022, says her experience as a lifelong resident, a local journalist, and an advocate in the wake of her loss will set her up for success.

“While I miss my daughter and I am going through unimaginable grief, I still want to honor her with actions, and I want to see my community come back together and thrive,” Rubio said. “There’s a lot of tension. And I recognize that it could get worse. And if we get to a point where we’re so divided, do we never come back from it? So I want it to be a part of bringing my community back together.”

Cody Smith

Cody Smith wasn’t available for an interview but sent the following statement to KSAT 12 News:

“As a lifelong resident of Uvalde, I love this town and this community. I am honored to live and work here and am dedicated to improving our city and community as a whole.

“I would be remiss in not identifying that at current, there are many who are hurting and who need help, support, and resources, and in a variety of ways. It is our collective job as neighbors to them, to extend our time and empathy, and help in any way that we can.

“As past Mayor for 4 years, and City Councilman for 13, I understand the leadership this position affords to not only unify and strengthen our community, but facilitate a wave of difference makers who can impact our citizens for generations.

“No matter what happens on Election Day, I am committed to Uvalde and our truly wonderful community, each and every day.”

Find other results here.

About the Authors

David Ibañez has been managing editor of since the website's launch in October 2000.

Leigh Waldman is an investigative reporter at KSAT 12. She joined the station in 2021. Leigh comes to San Antonio from the Midwest after spending time at a station in Omaha, NE. After two winters there, she knew it was time to come home to Texas. When Leigh is not at work, she enjoys eating, playing with her dogs and spending time with family.

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