The big news – the retirements of Speaker Straus and Chairman Cook – is covered here.

HD127: Humble construction company executive Kyle Stephenson announced he would challenge Rep. Dan Huberty (R-Humble) in the Republican primary. Stephenson established a campaign committee for a House race in early August but did not indicate which seat he would seek.

Early Voting continues for the November 6 general and constitutional amendment election. Turnout has been very light across most of the state. Less than 0.5% of registered voters in the state’s 15 most populous counties voted early in person or by mail through Tuesday, the second day of the early voting period. This is slightly more than half the turnout from the first two days of the 2015 general election.

Voter ID: Oral arguments before a three-judge panel of the Fifth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals will be December 5. Plaintiffs had hoped to expedite the process by taking the case straight to the full Fifth Circuit. Earlier this month, the court denied their request.

GOV: Houston investor Andrew White, son of former Gov. Mark White (D), has established a campaign committee for a potential challenge of Gov. Greg Abbott (R) as a Democrat. We reported on his potential candidacy yesterday.

AG: Attorney General Ken Paxton (R) announced he would seek re-election. As far as we can tell, no one has taken a formal step toward challenging him.

Rick Green


SC2: Former Rep. Rick Green (R-Dripping Springs) said he would run for the seat held by Justice Don Willett if the U.S. Senate confirms him for the Fifth U.S. Court of Appeals. In 2016, he lost the Republican primary to Justice Paul Green, 52%-48%, and he lost an open-seat runoff to Debra Lehrmann, 52%-48%, in 2010. Green represented HD46 for two terms from 1999 to 2003. Green defeated former Rep. Alec Rhodes (D-Dripping Springs) by 36 votes in the 1998 general election and was easily re-elected in 2000. He lost his 2002 re-election bid in the redrawn HD45 to Patrick Rose (D-Dripping Springs), 49%-48%.

SD7: Sen. Paul Bettencourt (R-Houston) announced he would seek re-election.

HD8: Corsicana businessman and Navarro Co. emergency management coordinator Eric Myers is considering a race for the seat being vacated by Rep. Byron Cook (R-Corsicana).

HD121: Jeff Judson, a former Olmos Park council member, former State Republican Executive Committee member and former president of the Texas Public Policy Foundation, said he was considering running to fill the seat being vacated by Speaker Joe Straus (R-San Antonio). In a tweet, the Texas Tribune’s Patrick Svitek reported that Judson said, “The earth just shifted,” referring to Straus’s announcement earlier in the day that he would not seek re-election. Judson ran unsuccessfully against Straus in the 2016 Republican primary (28%).

Milam Co.: Former County Judge Frank Summers announced he would seek to reclaim the office. Incumbent Dave Barkemeyer (R) is not seeking re-election. Summers was first elected County Judge as a Democrat in 1998 and served three terms before being defeated by Barkemeyer in the 2010 general election. Summers switched parties and lost to Barkemeyer in the 2014 Republican primary. Attorney Steve Young is also in the race.

Nueces Co.: County Comm. Mike Pusley (R) announced he would run for county judge. Incumbent Loyd Neal (R) is not seeking re-election. Pusley was first elected to the Commissioner’s Court in 2008, ousting the Democratic incumbent and giving Republicans control of the court for the first time in county history. Pusley must resign to run, but he will continue to serve until a replacement is appointed.

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