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Recently Posted News & Analysis

TLR Endorses Guzman as Miller Passes on Abbott Challenge

Texans for Lawsuit Reform PAC endorsed former Supreme Court Justice Eva Guzman (R) over Atty. Gen. Ken Paxton (R).

“Eva Guzman is a committed conservative and an accomplished lawyer and judge whose intellect and strength of character have served Texas well in her two decades of public service,” PAC chair Richard Trabulsi said in a statement. “Justice Guzman has the breadth of legal experience and the personal and professional integrity that we must require of our state’s highest legal officer.”

The PAC has previously contributed nearly $1.5M to Paxton’s campaign account since 2002, and it endorsed him for the 2014 general election following his primary runoff victory over then-Rep. Dan Branch (R-Dallas) and in 2018 for re-election (Paxton was unopposed in the primary that year.).

Guzman’s campaign released a nearly two-minute biographical ad in which she recounts her journey from the East Side of Houston to the Texas Supreme Court.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K-ICTqQSI-Y

AGRIC: Agriculture Comm. Sid Miller (R) announced he would seek re-election, foregoing a primary challenge of Gov. Greg Abbott (R).

Subscribers can read the rest of this report.

©2021 Texas Election Source LLC

Local Runoff Results and a Primary Challenger for Cruz

Beaumont: Robin Mouton won the mayoral runoff over Roy West, 52%-48%, to become the city’s first Black female mayor. It was the first mayoral runoff in the city’s recorded history. Turnout was 24%, an unusually high figure for a summer municipal runoff election.

Brownsville: Challenger Pedro Cardenas ousted council member Ben Neece, 68%-32%, and Roy De Los Santos won an open council seat, 54%-46%, over Jessica Puente-Bradshaw.

Harlingen: Frank Morales won an open council seat over Chino Sanchez, 66%-34%.

Pasadena: Jonathan Estrada defeated J.T. Thomas, 57%-43%, to win an open council seat.

Eye on 2024

SEN: In an eclectic announcement, El Paso sex therapist Elizabeth Rothschild announced her “candidacy for a chair in the United States Senate Gallery in Washington, D.C.” as a Republican. Rothschild’s Facebook page indicates she has a PhD, a medical degree and is also a federal marshal. “The Adult Entertainment industry provides career opportunities, whereby jobs are created and maintained to sustain the economic stability of the industry, which contributes moderately to our national Gross National Product,” she said in a press release. “Our nation needs all of our jobs.”

Neither U.S. Senate seat is up in 2022, so her earliest opportunity to win a seat in the gallery is 2024, assuming she wins the primary against U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R). A page on her website indicates she may not run until 2026, which would put her in a primary against U.S. Sen. John Cornyn (R), or possibly 2032.

©2021 Texas Election Source LLC

Re-election Announcements and Other News for June 17

CD6 special: Club for Growth Action released a new digital ad highlighting former President Trump’s endorsement of Susan Wright (R).

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QLvtVh1F3sw

The ad is part of $150K in independent expenditures from the group in this runoff. Prior to Trump’s endorsement just before the May 1 special election, Club for Growth Action spent more than $300K opposing Wright’s eventual runoff opponent, Rep. Jake Ellzey (R-Waxahachie).

LAND open: Galveston County Judge Mark Henry (R) announced he would not run for Land Commissioner and would instead seek re-election.

SD22: Sen. Brian Birdwell (R-Granbury) announced he would seek re-election.

Subscribers can read the rest of this report.

©2021 Texas Election Source LLC

Guzman Set to Challenge Paxton

As expected, former Supreme Court Justice Eva Guzman (R) filed paperwork with the Texas Ethics Commission indicating she would challenge Atty. Gen. Ken Paxton (R) in the Republican primary. She joins Land Comm. George P. Bush (R), who previously announced his campaign.

Guzman was appointed to the high court in 2009 by then-Gov. Rick Perry (R). She was the first Hispanic/Latina woman elected statewide when she won a full term in 2010. In 2016, Guzman became the highest vote-getter in state history in both the Republican primary (1.27M votes) and the general election (4.9M votes). Both of those records have since been broken.

Guzman enters the race at a significant financial disadvantage. Paxton ended 2020 with $5.6M on hand, which was a little more than three times the $1.8M on hand reported by Bush. Guzman ended the year with just $133K in the bank. Her only campaign finance advantage is a brief head start she gets over the two sitting officeholders. Since she resigned from the Supreme Court, she is no longer constrained by stricter judicial fundraising requirements or campaign contribution moratoriums. Paxton and Bush cannot raise money until June 20.

Given the campaign finance reporting schedule, Guzman’s entry into the race in June means she will disclose early contributions to her campaign in a month. making that report an early indicator of her potential strength.

Subscribers can read the rest of this report.

©2021 Texas Election Source LLC

Close Races Highlight June 12 Runoffs

Several local jurisdictions held runoff elections yesterday (Saturday). Early voting concludes Tuesday in Beaumont, Brownsville, Harlingen and other local jurisdictions holding runoff elections on June 19.

Greenville: Terry Thomas won the runoff for a council seat with 80% of the vote, an unusually high percentage for a runoff election.

Killeen: Challenger Michael Boyd ousted D4 council member Steve Harris, 62%-38%, after getting the same number of vote as Harris in the May 1 election.

Lake Jackson: Rhonda Seth defeated former council member Will Brooks, 57%-43%. In 2020, Seth unsuccessfully sought the Republican nomination for open HD25 in 2020, finishing fourth with 20% of the vote.

Lufkin: Wes Suiter leads Kim Odgen by 5 votes for a council seat. Only 7 votes separated the candidates in the May 1 election.

Palestine: Dana Goolsby was elected mayor by 10 votes over Mitchell Jordan.

San Juan: Mayor Mario Garza narrowly survived the runoff against council member Jesus Ramirez, 50.5%-49.5%, a margin of 33 votes. Council member Coach Guajardo won re-election, and Dina Santillan won the remainder of Rameriz’s council term.

Vidor: Council member Misty Songe won the mayoral runoff, 65%-35%.

©2021 Texas Election Source LLC

White Retiring, Possibly Eying Statewide Office

Rep. James White (R-Hillister) announced he would not seek re-election. White, who is serving his sixth term, was first elected in 2010.

“I’m a term limit guy by nature,” White said during an appearance on KTRE-TV’s East Texas Now’s Legislative Roundtable. “I wish we had term limits in Texas. So, I think my window is closing after this session, this term.”

White said he is considering a run for statewide office. “Don’t be surprised if you see me on the Republican Primary ballot for statewide office,” he told KFDM-TV in Beaumont.

SD24 open: Ellen Troxclair’s campaign announced she has raised more than $125K since announcing her candidacy two days ago.

CD28: Laredo immigration attorney Jessica Cisneros, who unsuccessfully challenged U.S. Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-Laredo) in the primary, posted a video on her Facebook page showing her running with her dog. Above the video were three running emojis. She narrowly lost Cuellar, 52%-48%, after raising $1.9M. Laredo community organizer Tannya Benavides (D) previously established a campaign committee for the race.

Dallas: The Texas Supreme Court rejected without comment Donald Parish’s suit seeking a new election for city council. Parish finished 28 votes behind former council member Kevin Felder, who lost that runoff to incumbent Adam Bazaldua.

Local Runoffs: Greenville, Killeen, San Juan and a handful of local jurisdictions will hold runoff elections tomorrow (Saturday). We will not be providing live coverage and will instead report notable results on Sunday.

Beaumont, Brownsville, Harlingen and a few other jurisdictions will hold runoffs on June 19.

©2021 Texas Election Source LLC

Patrick Seeking Re-election and Other News for June 10

Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick (R) announced he would seek re-election to a third term. Patrick’s campaign account had $19.5M on hand as of December 31, the highest cash-on-hand figure ever reported by a Texas lieutenant governor. As of that date, Patrick has raised $43.1M since he was elected to the office in 2014, including $3.2M during the last 10 or so days of June 2019 after the contribution moratorium in place for that legislative session ended.

Freshman Rep. Cody Vasut (R-Angleton) said he did not support Patrick’s re-election bid. “I frankly think we need new leadership in the Texas Senate,” Vasut was quoted as saying to the Lake Jackson Business Assoc. “He needs to go. I think we need somebody else in there who is actually committed to being productive.” While it is not unusual for one chamber’s members to criticize the other chamber right after a session, Vasut’s candid assessment might earn him a primary challenger.

LAND open: Houston heart surgeon Jon Spiers announced he would seek the Republican nomination for Land Commissioner. Spiers received less than 1% of the vote in the 2018 Republican primary for CD2

SD4: Sen. Brandon Creighton (R-Conroe) announced he would seek re-election.

HD41: Rep. Bobby Guerra (D-Mission) announced he would seek re-election.

CD16: U.S. Rep. Veronica Escobar (D-El Paso) announced she would seek re-election.

Tarrant Co.: Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price announced she would seek the Republican nomination for County Judge. Incumbent Glen Whitley (R) is not seeking re-election. He, Arlington Mayor Jeff Williams and North Richland Hills Mayor Oscar Treviño endorsed Price.

©2021 Texas Election Source

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Jeff Blaylock

Jeff Blaylock

Publisher

Jeff is a political junkie, longtime public policy wonk and former Texas Legislature staffer who has worked political campaigns in Texas and several other states, ranging from school boards to legislators to governors to referenda. He is a public and government affairs consultant based in Austin, Texas, who offers his keen insights about Lone Star State politics as Texas Election Source.

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