Is Ken Paxton Going To A Runoff And If So Against Who
The hottest statewide primary is easily the Republican race for attorney general. Paxton faces three well-known challengers in Texas politics: Land Commissioner George P. Bush, U.S. Rep. Louie Gohmert of Tyler and Eva Guzman, a former justice on the Texas Supreme Court.
They are all assailing Paxton over his legal problems, which include a 2015 securities fraud indictment that he is still fighting, plus a more recent FBI probe of claims by former deputies that he abused his office to aid a wealthy donor. He has denied wrongdoing in both cases.
Paxton, who boasts the endorsement of Trump, is hoping for an outright win, but polls show that is not certain. Bush is confident he is headed for a runoff and has been speaking about it as a foregone conclusion in recent days.
However, the primary has turned into a political fog of war in its homestretch. Paxton has been attacking Gohmert, who is most ideologically similar to the incumbent, while Bush and Guzman have been brawling against one another.
Paxton piled on against Guzman on Friday with a last-minute TV ad backed by nearly $1 million. The commercial accuses Guzman of organizing a woke critical race theory summit when she was a judge, a reference to a 2016 summit on race and law enforcement that the states top two courts hosted after the fatal shooting of a group of Dallas cops earlier that year.
Regardless, the late target on her back has raised speculation that she is rising at the end.
State Political Party Revenue
State political parties typically deposit revenue in separate state and federal accounts in order to comply with state and federal campaign finance laws.
The Democratic Party and the Republican Party maintain state affiliates in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and select U.S. territories. The following map displays total state political party revenue per capita for the Republican state party affiliates.
Will Trump Sweep His Endorsements
Trump has handed out copious endorsements for this Texas primary, with Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick regularly in his ear about who to support.
Many of the Trump-backed candidates on the ballot Tuesday are expected to win outright, but a few could end up being a riskier bet for the former president. Of course, there is Paxton, who is staring down a possible runoff. But some Trump-backed candidates farther down the ballot, like state Senate candidate Pete Flores, could also be at risk of a combative runoff despite boasting the support of the most influential Republican in the country. Similarly, in the Tarrant County judges race, Trump-backed Tim OHare is not a sure bet to knock out former Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price in their first round.
On Sunday, Trump issued statements reiterating his support for four Texas candidates, raising the possibility that they are in need of a boost after early voting. The candidates included Flores and state Rep. Ryan Guillen, the South Texas Democrat who switched parties last year and now faces two Republican primary challengers.
The primary marks the first major electoral test of Trumps popularity among Texas Republicans since he left the White House and it comes after he suffered embarrassment last year in Texas when his endorsed candidate lost in a special congressional election.
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Your Election Faqs Answered About The March 1 Texas Primaries
, Executive Producer/Digital Content
If youre registered to vote but not one of the 97,653 people who took advantage of early voting in Bexar County, then Tuesday is your chance to cast your ballot in the Texas primary election.
The Texas primary marks the first midterm primary election of any U.S. state in 2022.
Even without a presidential election in 2022, its still an important midterm election year with all 435 seats in the U.S. House of Representatives and a third of the U.S. Senate seats up for grabs.
Texas is one of 39 states with gubernatorial elections this year, as well as other state offices on the ballot. And Bexar County will elect a new County Judge the top elected official in the county for the first time in 20 years.
Those positions will ultimately be decided during the General Election on Nov. 8, but the candidates who make it to the November election will be selected by voters in the March 1 Primary Election.
You may have questions about how, when and where to vote and weve got you covered.
Polls Are Closing Statewide In Texas
Polls are now closing statewide in Texas.
Two big-name Republicans, Gov. Greg Abbott and Attorney General Ken Paxton, are seeking to beat back challenges from the right. In South Texas, the most conservative Democrat in the US House, Rep. Henry Cuellar, is attempting to survive a rematch against Jessica Cisneros, the progressive who nearly ousted him in the primary two years ago.
The contests will be the first test of how the restrictive new voting law enacted by Texas Republicans last year will reshape the electorate.
One important wrinkle in Texas: To win the primary, candidates don’t just have to beat their rivals but must win more than 50% of the vote. Otherwise, the top two finishers advance to a head-to-head runoff election on May 24. That threshold could play an important role in several House primaries.
CNN is monitoring results as they come in.
CNN’s Eric Bradner and Gregory Krieg contributed reporting to this post.
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Texas May Have The Worst Gerrymander In The Country
In the last two presidential elections, Texas has inched toward Democrats, but this hasnt stopped Abbott from signing a number of racist and illiberal bills into law since 2020 that restrict everything from what is taught in the classroom to the manner in which Texans can vote. Yet this might not be enough for some conservatives in the state. The Texas Tribune reported in February that some Republican voters have begun to question whether Abbott has done enough to deliver on his initial campaign promises. And if that wasnt enough to cast doubt on Abbotts reelection chances, its possible that a local man challenging Abbott named Rick Perry no, not the states former governor will distract voters on the ballot who mistake him for the wrong person.
Is The Texas Governors Race Set
For months, Republican Gov. Greg Abbott and Democrat Beto ORourke have been looking past the primaries and campaigning against each other.
Abbott set his sights on a third term with Trumps endorsement, a formidable $56 million in campaign funds and his signature on a long list of divisive new laws on guns, abortion and immigration that have steered Texas hard to the right.
But that didnt insulate him from challengers on the far right, including former Florida congressman Allen West, the one-term tea party firebrand. West and other primary rivals leaned into anger within the GOP base over Abbotts handling of the COVID-19 pandemic, including an early mask mandate.
But there are scarce signs of a close race. If Abbott avoids a primary runoff by garnering more than 50% of the vote, his victory would demonstrate broad support within the GOP and keep him in the conversation of potential 2024 presidential candidates.
ORourke, coming off an early exit in the 2020 presidential race, has shown he can still draw a crowd in Texas and quickly raise money. He has no serious competition on Tuesday, though his performance along the U.S.-Mexico border will be closely watched.
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What Is A Primary Election
In Texas, the primary elections are actually two separate elections that occur on the same date, March 1
The Republican and Democratic parties use statewide primary elections to select their respective nominees for the general election in November.
Winners are determined by majority vote. If no single candidate receives more than 50 percent of the votes during the primary, the top two candidates will head to a runoff election in May. The winner would then advance to Novembers general election.
The Green and Libertarian parties nominate candidates by convention and their candidates will not appear on the primary election ballot. You can find out how to participate in the conventions by visiting the Green Party or Libertarian Party websites.
Can I Vote By Mail:
According to the Texas Election Code, only those who fall into four categories qualify to vote by mail.
- The first way is, absence from the county.” That means anyone who will not physically be in the county where they live on election day.
- Second, disability.” That’s anyone with sickness or illness where voting in-person likely requires some assistance. Or the act of voting in person itself could jeopardize that person’s health. Included in this category are expecting mothers. Fear of COVID-19 does not count.
- Third is “age.” Anyone over 65 can vote by mail.
- Fourth is confinement in jail.” A person held in jail can get a ballot if there has been no felony conviction in their pending case.
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Republican Lieutenant Governor Primary Vote Choice
Respondents were asked, ” If the 2022 Republican primary election for lieutenant governor were held today, which of the following candidates would you vote for, or haven’t you thought about it enough to have an opinion? “
Respondents were asked, ” If the 2022 Republican primary election for lieutenant governor were held today, which of the following candidates would you vote for, or haven’t you thought about it enough to have an opinion? ” Measurement of Party ID for this figure is based on two questions. First, respondents were asked whether they consider themselves to be a Democrats, Republicans, independents, other, or not sure. Those who responded that they are independents or “other” were then asked if they lean toward either the Democrats or Republicans. If they indicated that they lean toward one party or the other, they are considered Democrats or Republicans for the purposes of this figure. Only “pure” independents or members of a third party who indicate that they have no preference for Democrats vis-a-vis Republicans are considered independents. Respondents who answered that they are “not sure” for either of the two aforementioned questions are not incorporated into this figure.
Respondents were asked, ” If the 2022 Republican primary election for lieutenant governor were held today, which of the following candidates would you vote for, or haven’t you thought about it enough to have an opinion? ” Race is calculated according to the race variable.
Texas Court Of Criminal Appeals
Three Republican incumbents are seeking reelection. Mary Lou Keel is running unopposed for the Place 2 seat. Place 5 incumbent Scott Walker faces Clint Morgan, a veteran Harris County prosecutor, in the Republican primary. Dana Huffman, a North Texas municipal judge and prosecutor, is the only Place 5 candidate in the Democratic primary. Place 6 incumbent Jesse F. McClure III also is unopposed in the Republican primary Robert Johnson, a district judge in Harris County, is the only candidate running in the Democratic primary. The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals is the highest state appeals court for criminal cases.
TEXAS COURT OF CRIMINAL APPEALS PLACE 2Republican
TEXAS COURT OF CRIMINAL APPEALS PLACE 5Democrat
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Can Other State Gop Leaders Deliver A Knockout Punch To Their Intraparty Critics
No other Republican statewide official faces as big a runoff risk as Paxton, but they still face meaningful competition Tuesday. Among them is Abbott, who is up against a group of challengers from his right including former state Sen. Don Huffines of Dallas and former Texas GOP Chair Allen West.
Abbott has publicly ignored the challengers throughout the election cycle while taking striking steps to shore up his right flank. Those moves include his order last week telling state health agencies to consider medical treatments for transgender kids as child abuse, an issue the governors primary opponents have harped on for months.
While polls show Abbott is in a good position to win outright Tuesday, he is no doubt looking for a big vote share and his campaign has been spending like it, unloading over $15 million since late January. The primary has amounted to the most persistent opposition that Abbott has faced from within his own party in his long career in Texas politics.
Huffines made his closing arguments at a Houston rally Thursday with U.S. Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky, a family friend who has endorsed him. Referring to Abbott as old King Greg, Huffines repeatedly referred back to his impetus for running: the early stages of Abbotts COVID-19 response, which included a statewide mask mandate and business closures.
Abbott continued to disregard his GOP opponents during a primary eve rally in San Antonio.
Some Democrats Are Voting In The Texas Gop Primaries Will It Make A Difference
Texas voters who go to the polls Tuesday will be asked in which primary they want to participate the Republican or the Democratic? Texas has an open primary system, so voters are free to choose. But what happens if someone votes in the other partys primary in order to be a spoiler?
I’m gonna vote in the GOP primary for that very reason,” said K. Monroe, a lifelong Democrat living in Austin. “Let’s get these guys to a primary runoff. Let’s make them burn their war chest money before they face the Democrats in November.
She admits crossing over to vote in the Republican primary to be an agent of chaos.
Well, I’m not alone. I can’t say that I was the one that had this thought,” Monroe said. “A friend of mine shared her strategy with me. And I acted on it, and I don’t think I’m alone.
She said she has no misgivings about voting in bad faith in the GOP primary because she thinks the Republican Party is acting in bad faith with voter restrictions.
I think the Texas GOP threw ethics out the window long, long ago,” Monroe said. “So I think it’s perfectly ethical for me to do what I did in the primary.
Tom Whitehurst is an independent but said hes voted in the past in Republican primaries to be able to cast a meaningful vote, which isnt always the case in the lopsided general elections in Texas.
Harvey Kronberg, the founding editor of the Quorum Report, said hes noticed more people doing just that.
But establishment Democrats say dont do it.
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What Do I Need To Vote
You will need an acceptable form of identification to vote. According to VoteTexas.gov, these are the acceptable forms of ID:
- Texas Driver License issued by the Texas Department of Public Safety
- Texas Election Identification Certificate issued by DPS
- Texas Personal Identification Card issued by DPS
- Texas Handgun License issued by DPS
- United States Military Identification Card containing the persons photograph
- United States Citizenship Certificate containing the persons photograph
- United States Passport
If you don’t have any of the above-listed forms of ID and can’t get one, you can bring one of the following in order to request a “Reasonable Impediment Declaration:”
- Copy or original of a government document that shows the voters name and an address, including the voters voter registration certificate
- Copy of or original current utility bill
- Copy of or original bank statement
- Copy of or original government check
- Copy of or original paycheck
- Copy of or original of a certified domestic birth certificate or a document confirming birth admissible in a court of law which establishes the voters identity
Is It Common For Democrats To Participate In The Republican Primary And Vice Versa
In short, no. According to Elizabeth Simas, a political science professor at the University of Houston who spoke about this with Texas Standard, cases of strategic voting dont happen much in primary elections. Certainly, there are people who do it but we just dont see it happening as much as theres potentially this fear for it to happen, Simas said.
In areas dominated by one party, especially rural areas, voters might cross party lines in the primary to have more of a say in their local races.
In my county, all the local races are Republican. Judges, sheriff, district attorney, Martha Mims, a Democratic voter who lives Williamson County, wrote in The Texas Tribunes Facebook group, This is Your Texas. If I want to have a say in local government, I have to vote in the Republican primary.
Voters like Mims can do that, thanks to Texas open primary. Do you have more questions about voting in Texas? Submit them to our Texplainer series.
Disclosure: The University of Houston has been a financial supporter of The Texas Tribune, a nonprofit, nonpartisan news organization that is funded in part by donations from members, foundations and corporate sponsors. Financial supporters play no role in the Tribune’s journalism. Find a complete list of them here.
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Gov Greg Abbott Wins The Gop Nomination Defeating Challengers From The Right
Gov. Greg Abbott, facing the most serious primary challenge of his long political career, overcame the spirited efforts of several opponents who attempted to unseat the two-term governor on Tuesday by branding him as insufficiently conservative.
A victory by Mr. Abbott, an aggressive campaigner and prolific fund-raiser who commands a more than $60 million campaign war chest, never appeared seriously in doubt. He ran during the primary as if he were already focused on the general election, attacking the Democratic front-runner, Beto ORourke, and almost entirely ignoring his Republican challengers, who included Don Huffines, a former state senator, Allen West, a former Florida congressman, and Chad Prather, a conservative entertainer.
Those challengers attempted to position themselves to the right of Mr. Abbott on issues including the pandemic and the surge of illegal crossings at the states border with Mexico. But the governor left little room for them to maneuver, issuing executive orders banning mandates for masks and vaccines and ordering thousands of National Guard troops to set up along the border.
As the election approached, Mr. Abbott oversaw a sharp rightward turn in the State Capitol last year, with new restrictions on voting and abortion and a law allowing Texans to carry guns without a permit.
J. David Goodman
J. David Goodman