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Early voting begins for District 8 race

Cissy Lizarraga, Robert Cormell vying for seat

Good Morning El Paso: Early voting...

EL PASO, Texas - There is one vacancy left on El Paso City Council, but it will soon be filled by one of the two candidates vying for the spot.

Early voting for District 8 started Wednesday and runs through July 11.

The special election race for District 8 was needed in early June after Cortney Niland stepped down for personal reasons.

The race was forced into a runoff between Cissy Lizarraga and Robert Cormell, the district spans from the city's westside to south El Paso, near the County Coliseum.

A runoff is needed because Cormell received only 45 percent of the vote, but needed 50 percent plus one vote for the win. Lizarraga got 25 percent of the vote from a pool of five candidates.

ABC-7 caught up with Lizarraga and Cormell as they made their way through the community to garner more support.

"I've owned my own business since I was 16 years old. I've been self-employed. I've known what it is to take care of clients and work within a budget and I think that that's something that we're not seeing a whole lot in our city government," Cormell said.

Cormell is the executive director of the Wayside Teen Center. He ran for mayor in the last election, but finished third behind Oscar Leeser and Steve Ortega.

Lizarraga is a former educator and wife of current El Paso judge Marcos Lizarraga, this is her first time running for office.

She said her community is very diverse with some of the wealthiest people in the district and some of the poorest.

"I believe that I can bring balance to District 8, I know how to communicate with both and I can identify with both communities and both cultures," Lizarraga said.

Both candidates have told ABC-7 in the past they believe the downtown arena could have been built in a different location.

Cormell said the issue is a top priority and wants to work with his counterparts if he is elected of office.

Lizarraga said she believes a decision will be made before any candidate takes office.

Election Day is July 15.

For early voting locations, clicks here.

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