Congressman honors ‘queen of Tejano music’ Selena on House floor

A California Democrat is marking Women’s History Month with a tribute on the House floor to “one of the most influential Latin artists of all time,” singer Selena.

“Few artists have shaped American and Latin music like Selena Quintanilla-Pérez,” Rep. Robert Garcia said Tuesday on the floor of the House. “The queen of Tejano music — who I grew up listening to — has won the Grammy lifetime achievement award and dozens of top awards and honors.”

“She was arguably the most influential Mexican-American artist of her generation,” Garcia said.

The 23-year-old “Como La Flor” entertainer was shot and killed by her fan club president, Yolanda Saldivar, in 1995.

“While she left us too soon, Selena’s life and music touched the lives of so many, transcending borders and barriers and breaking into a male-dominated Tejano music scene,” Garcia said.

But the performer’s impact, the congressman said, “reaches far beyond her music, her business and her fashion.”

“She has been credited for elevating Tejano and Latin music into the mainstream market. Whether at a family party, a celebration or at the club, when a Selena song comes on, everyone hits the dance floor,” Garcia said.

“She’s a symbol of unity, resilience and Latino and Mexican-American pride,” Garcia said, before drawing inspiration from one of Selena’s song titles.

“We’ll never stop dreaming of you,” he said.

The 46-year-old lawmaker has made something of a tradition out of honoring pop culture figures in the House as a way of observing the beginning of Women’s History Month in March.

Last year, Garcia delivered a tribute to Beyonce, calling the “Texas Hold ‘Em” singer a role model who “stood up for voting rights, for feminism, for women and girls, for my community — the LGBTQ+ community.”

Garcia also paid homage to RuPaul Charles last June on the House floor at the beginning of Pride Month, praising the “RuPaul’s Drag Race” host as “an American phenomenon and an icon.”

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