Last Thursday the Chief City Auditor, Edmundo Calderon, presented a report to the Financial Oversight and Audit Committee (FOAC) in which he showed that City Rep. Cassandra Hernandez and former City Rep. Claudia Lizette Rodriguez used their City gas cards to collectively purchase 3,403 gallons of gasoline, which was 63% of the total purchased by the City Council and Mayor in that year.

We saw Rep. Hernandez do emergency damage control with her two press releases and her insane gas-card-giveaway social media post, but now former Rep. Rodriguez has posted her own 14-minute video to Instagram.


What we know so far about Rodriguez is that she purchased 1,459 gallons of gas in 2022 totaling $5,294, including 10 separate purchases in November (at the height of her unsuccessful campaign for reelection).

We know that she purchased both regular and supreme unleaded, indicating gas was pumped into at least two different vehicles.

We know she was admonished for purchasing gas in Pecos, Texas in 2020 but went on to purchase gas in Van Horn, Texas on two separate occasions: May 22 (15 gallons) and August 11 (19 gallons).

We know she purchased gas four times on consecutive days, and on November 28 she purchased gas twice on the same day: 15 gallons and then 21 gallons.

We also know that Rodriguez filled up her tank on her last day in office, this past January 2. One for the road!


In a rambling post uploaded to Instagram yesterday, Rodriguez calls Chief City Auditor Edmundo Calderon a “prosecutor” and attacks the “corrupt process” of FOAC, which she claims is “politically motivated.”

She displays two cashier’s checks amounting to $5,300 (what she spent on gas in 2022) and declares: “I am prepared to pay [back to the City] the full amount if someone can show me again where I did something wrong.”

She then makes the outrageous claim that she drove 50,000 miles in 2022 on official City business, enough to drive around the circumference of the planet twice. She claims she lives further from City Hall than did the other reps and that she drove to a lot of meetings. (Her official Facebook page advertises six community meetings in the first half of 2022, of which three were virtual).

Let us be clear. There is no possible way she drove anywhere near 50,000 miles for City business in 2022. That would be almost 1,000 miles per week! In any case, she purchased 1,459 gallons, which could not get her anywhere close to that figure. (The word on the street is that she drives both a Hummer and a Jeep).

Toward the end of her video, she tells Rep. Art Fierro, who defeated her in December, “You will never ever be at my level,” and then tells Mayor Leeser “Shame on you” for calling on his “Gentlemen’s Club” to investigate her and Hernandez at the upcoming special meeting this Thursday. This means, of course, that anyone who criticizes her is sexist.


Hernandez and Rodriguez keep reminding the media that the City imposed no cap on the amount of gas they were permitted to purchase, however Title 8, Section 39.02(c)(4) of Texas law makes it a felony to misuse “government property, services, personnel, or any other thing of value belonging to the government” that costs between $2,500 and $30,000. In addition, the City has its own rules against embezzlement.


The only substantive media report on this scandal was authored by Elida S. Perez for El Paso Matters on May 3. The El Paso Inc report by Sara Sanchez is utterly biased, as her only source is Hernandez. Without exception, the gas-card reporting by our television media has been diluted and lazy. We expect that Adam Powell of the El Paso Times will come out with a strong report soon and look forward to reading it.

Gassandra Hernandez and Claudia “Fill’er up” Rodriguez have a lot of explaining to do.

Please consider signing up and speaking at Thursday’s 10:00am special meeting under agenda item 1.