Tito Muñoz: 'A Citizens' Candidate'
36th District Senate candidate Tito Muñoz will run in the Republican primary election Aug. 23.
A self-described political activist, 36th District Senate candidate Tito Muñoz is focusing on solutions for working Virginians.
“This is not about liberals or non-liberals,” said Muñoz, who owns a construction company. “This is about the issues. This is about solutions for those issues.”
Muñoz will run against Jeff Frederick in a Republican primary election on August 23. The winner of the primary will run against longtime Senator Linda “Toddy” Puller in November.
Muñoz, a Woodbridge resident, became known to many as “Tito the Builder” after speaking at a 2008 rally hosted by former Alaska governor Sarah Palin.
“It doesn’t matter to me,” said Muñoz of his moniker. “If people want to call me ‘Tito the Builder,’ that’s fine.”
The road to Muñoz’s first foray in public office had some obstacles along the way. Born and raised in Colombia, he began his career in construction as a laborer shortly after moving to the United States. He wanted to advance his career, and saw that the only way to do so was through getting an education. He attended community college and slowly but surely, climbed the ranks until he decided to establish his own construction company in Northern Virginia.
His ability to overcome hurdles has earned him the respect of his peers. Ralph Duca worked with Muñoz in the Bronx 20 years ago and remains a close friend.
“He’s a great example of the American dream,” said Duca. “He has experience in a country where he didn’t have those freedoms, and he has a true appreciation of what we have in this country. It really shows what this country’s about.”
Muñoz, who became a naturalized U.S. citizen in 2008, feels that his experience running a construction company puts him in touch with what constituents want.
“I think I’m a citizen’s candidate because I have worked to a lot of people, I’m related to a lot of people. I think I’m more connected to them. I know I have to play that role but I’m not that kind of a person,” said Muñoz. “I look at myself as a construction owner. I also work in the field. I work with the guys, work with the operators, and oversee construction. That’s how I see the future in politics.”
He has hit the ground running, campaigning all over familiar territory. He is actively campaigning in the 36th District, knocking on doors and speaking with constituents.
“I’ve gotten a good reception. There are people that are happy,” Muñoz explained. “They are happy there is a person that has practical knowledge of things in life.”
Muñoz is a vocal supporter of conservative causes. He founded the Conservative Hispanic Coalition in order to educate the Hispanic community about U.S. politics, and he also hosts “America Eres Tu,” a conservative call-in show on WURA 920 AM. He has chosen to focus on the revitalization of Route 1, the economy, and federal government intrusion. He says that government regulations destroy opportunities for small business owners, stalling economic growth.
“As we destroy small businesses, we destroy future opportunities for business owners. That is what I think is wrong,” explained Muñoz. “Opportunities have to flourish in America because that’s what it’s all about.”
Former U.S. Senator George Allen has endorsed Muñoz. He said in a statement, “As a father, I’m in agreement with Tito’s principled, positive ideas to improve opportunities for Virginians with more jobs, using our energy resources, and improving transportation and education.”
Muñoz lives in Woodbridge with his wife, Deborah, where they are both active members of the Prince William County Republican Committee.