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Mayor candidate profile: Oscar Leeser

By Matthew Smith, Good Morning El Paso Weekend Anchor / Reporter
Published On: Apr 04 2013 11:33:05 PM CDT
Updated On: Jan 15 2014 06:59:17 PM CST

Meet mayoral candidate Oscar Leeser

EL PASO, Texas -

Oscar Leeser says he's not trying to be mayor, he just wants to make a difference.

"If we keep doing the same thing over and over again, we don't have change," said Leeser.

Leeser is one of eight men in the running to be El Paso's mayor. He has no history in politics, but said he has real-life experience as a businessman.

For more than a decade Leeser has been the owner and operator of Hyundai of El Paso. He employs more than 100 people, and says that experience would translate into running El Paso. According to him, a mayor needs to be like a salesman, but instead of selling cars you need to sell your city to big business, attracting more taxpayers.

"We need to build a team to run our city," said Leeser. "There is a big difference between me and everyone who's run before, you know the difference? Me."

Leeser became a household name four years ago.  That's when he swooped in and helped find a corporate sponsor for the Sun Bowl, El Paso's annual college football game.  He turned to Hyundai.  Leeser said he owns the ninth-largest dealership within the company, and his pull helped him help the game.  To this day, the Sun Bowl is still sponsored by Hyundai.

Aside from his business tactics, Leeser comes across like a real family man.

He's known for airing commercials with his mother saying he's a "good boy," however, she's hardly the only family member who sticks around his business or campaign.

Leeser's father still comes to work every day. One of his brothers works with him, and his nephews have been working on his campaign. Asked whether it's simply a campaign gimmick, Leeser assured ABC-7 that work is a family affair for him.

"That's my life, it's my business," said Leeser. "It's not because I decided to run for mayor that I wanted my family involved. I've had them around since I was young. My mom is 82. My dad is 86. They taught me the value of hard work and they're still working today."

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