A St. Paul City Council candidate has announced she will continue her campaign despite yet another health setback.
Liz De La Torre, running for the council’s Ward 1 seat, wrote in a statement Monday that she was diagnosed this spring with lupus, the autoimmune disease that causes the body's immune system to attack tissue and organs.
It's the latest serious ailment with which De La Torre has been diagnosed. She also suffers from anxiety and depression as well as Hashimoto’s disease, another autoimmune condition and one that damages the thyroid gland.
While her campaign has been quiet over the past few weeks during which she says she has "struggled to balance the demands of work and campaigning with my personal health and well-being," De La Torre has said she will continue to run for the seat.
"Continuing to run for office with a chronic health issue was not an easy decision. I know it will mean stretching myself to my physical, emotional and mental limits. I also know it will mean running a different campaign than I planned. But I’m ready to take on the challenge," De La Torre said in a statement sent to BMTN.
De La Torre announced her campaign in December and will challenge incumbent Council Member Dai Thao.
A former staffer for Rep. Betty McCollum, De La Torre would represent areas including Frogtown, Midway, and the Snelling-Hamline and Lexington-Hamline neighborhoods. She currently works with Sexual Violence Services at St. Paul-Ramsey County Public Health.
“As an advocate for victims of sexual violence, I am constantly inspired by the strength and resilience of my clients. I decided to run for city council so I could fight for meaningful policy changes that would improve their lives, and the lives of all our vulnerable neighbors,” the statement read.
De La Torre’s opponents for the seat include Lucky Rosenblum, Anika Bowie, Chester Charles and Abu Nayeem, according to the Pioneer Press.
With the filing Aug. 13 deadline for candidates approaching, many seats will face a crowded race before November’s elections.