Oscar Leeser wants to get back to City Hall.
The former mayor told KTSM he is running for mayor, less than two years after he decided not to seek re-election. Leeser filed paperwork for a campaign treasurer on Thursday, which will allow him to start fundraising for the Nov. 2020 election. Candidates can’t declare for office until 12 weeks before the election.
“We need to continue to do what I did for the four years I was in office,” Leeser said. “And that is represent all the citizens of El Paso.”
The former mayor originally told KTSM he was going to run again in November, but the filing for a treasurer allows him to start collecting campaign contributions.
Leeser was mayor from 2013 to 2017. He did not seek a second term following a successful battle with cancer.
“I had some health issues that are now behind us,” Leeser said. “Because of the health issues I had said I was not going to run again. It was important that once I said that, I kept my word. My word is very important to me.”
Leeser said he is focused on the city’s quality of life and jobs creation. He touted the drop in El Paso’s unemployment rate and some of the businesses he helped bring to El Paso, such as ADP and Prudential.
“With Prudential, we were not No. 1 on their list, but once they were here the people (of El Paso) made the difference,” Leeser said.
As the owner of Hyundai of El Paso, Leeser’s first venture into politics led to a 2013 victory over former city Rep. Steve Ortega. When Leeser decided not to run again, it led to an eight-candidate field. Incumbent Dee Margo won the election in 2017.