Early Voting continues for the November 6 general and constitutional amendment election. Turnout has been very light across most of the state. Just 0.3% of registered voters in the state’s 15 most populous counties voted early in person or by mail on Monday, the first day of the early voting period. This is about half the turnout from the first day of the 2015 general election.

GOV: Houston investor Andrew White, son of former Gov. Mark White (D), is expected to launch an exploratory committee for a potential challenge of Gov. Greg Abbott (R) as a Democrat. A web site and Facebook page are up and running, and a Twitter handle has been created but not yet used.

SD15: Houston resident Randy Orr established a campaign committee for a potential challenge of Sen. John Whitmire (D-Houston). His social media activity suggests he would run as a Republican.

HD14: College Station recent college graduate Jeston Texeira established a campaign committee for a potential primary challenge of John Raney (R-College Station).

HD46: Democratic challenger Nnamdi Orakwue confirmed he is still seeking the seat following the dismissal of criminal charges against Rep. Dawnna Dukes (D-Austin). He is at least the fourth Democratic challenger remaining in the race.

HD48: Rep. Donna Howard (D-Austin) announced she would seek re-election.

HD109: Dallas resident and 2016 Republican nominee Alissa Russell re-established her campaign committee for a potential general election rematch against Rep. Helen Giddings (D-Dallas). Russell received 17% of the vote against Giddings last year. She previously established a campaign committee for a State Board of Education ED13 race in 2012 but did not appear on the ballot.

HD117: San Antonio resident Terisha Shirley DeDeaux established a campaign committee for a potential primary challenge of Rep. Philip Cortez (D-San Antonio).

ED13: DeSoto resident Aicha Davis established a campaign committee for a potential challenge of board member Erika Beltran (D-Dallas).

CD4: Dallas educator Darrell Rodriguez updated his federal campaign committee to run in CD4, represented by U.S. Rep. John Ratcliffe (R-Rockwall), instead of CD32, represented by U.S. Rep. Pete Sessions (R-Dallas), as a Democrat. He is currently the only Democrat running for CD4. At least 10 Democrats remain in the race for CD32.

Bell Co.: Longtime Bell County Treasurer Charles Jones announced he would not seek a 10th term. He was first elected to the post as a Democrat in 1982 and has been re-elected eight times, the last four as a Republican following a 2001 party switch.

Dallas Co.: J.J. Koch, a Republican candidate of county commissioner, has petitioned a judge to remove the county’s elections administrator from office, alleging incompetence and official misconduct. The petition accuses Toni Pippins-Poole of improperly soliciting and receiving a gift from a software vendor and failing to prevent significant mail-in ballot fraud in the county.

Hays Co.: Dripping Springs businessman Walt Smith announced he would seek the Republican nomination for the county commissioner P4 seat being vacated by Ray Whisenant, who has endorsed Smith.

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