Early voting continues through Friday for the January 28 special runoff elections in HD28, HD100 and HD148.

In HD148, just 258 people voted today (Wednesday), bringing the two-day total to 3K. So far, 78% of votes have been cast by mail, and the number of mail ballots is already double the number from the November general election. In that election, the two Republican candidates received 29% of the vote, which was a little below their overall vote share.

Initial Primary Ratings: We have added our initial primary race rankings to our Crib Sheets. Each contested primary is rated from 5 stars down to 1 star based on competitiveness, potential impact, financial resources and, where applicable, “intangibles.” Our federal rankings are necessarily a little on faith since they are based on campaign finance data from October. They will be updated after year-end reports are filed on January 31. Our legislative and statewide ratings will be re-evaluated based on 30-day-out reports filed February 3.

Only six races received five-star ratings in our initial scoring:

  • SD27, where Sen. Eddie Lucio Jr. (D-Brownsville) faces two challengers, State Board of Education member Ruben Cortez and San Benito attorney Sara Stapleton-Barrera, who led the field in cash on hand
  • HD2, where Rep. Dan Flynn (R-Van) faces two primary challengers and has narrowly won his last two primary elections by 3.5 and 2.0 percentage points
  • HD59, where Rep. J.D. Sheffield (R-Gatesville) faces two challengers, including Stephenville business owner Cody Johnson, who has a $305K advantage in cash on hand
  • HD142, where Rep. Harold Dutton (D-Houston) faces Houston council member Jerry Davis, who has $50K more on hand, and two other challengers
  • CD22 open, where 15 Republicans are vying to succeed the retiring U.S. Rep. Pete Olson (R-Sugar Land) in what we expect will be the most expensive primary in the state this year; and
  • CD28, where U.S. Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-Laredo) faces Laredo attorney Jessica Cisneros, a progressive who had raised nearly $500K by September 30 and has drawn national attention (and money).

Ten state races and eight federal races received four-star ratings. Remember, these are primary race ratings, not general election ratings, which we will release in June. We typically upgrade up to two dozen primary races once 30-day-out (state) and pre-primary (federal) campaign finance reports are filed.

HD92 open: Texas Values Action PAC endorsed Jeff Cason to succeed the retiring Rep. Jonathan Stickland (R-Bedford).

HD102: Gov. Greg Abbott (R) endorsed former Rep. Linda Koop (R-Dallas) for a potential rematch against Rep. Ana-Maria Ramos (D-Dallas).

HD132: Texas Values Action PAC endorsed former Rep. Mike Schofield (R-Katy) for the Republican nomination to challenge Rep. Gina Calanni (D-Katy).

HD138: Texas Values Action PAC endorsed Lacey Hull to succeed the retiring Rep. Dwayne Bohac (R-Houston).

CD11 open: Texas Values Action PAC endorsed Jamie Berryhill to succeed the retiring U.S. Rep. Mike Conaway (R-Midland). Sen. Dawn Buckingham (R-Lakeway) endorsed J. Ross Lacy. San Angelo Mayor Brenda Gunter endorsed August Pfluger.

CD13 open: Texans for Fiscal Responsibility/Empower Texans endorsed Chris Ekstrom to succeed the retiring U.S. Rep. Mac Thornberry (R-Clarendon).

CD17 open: Sen. Charles Schwertner (R-Georgetown) endorsed Elianor Vessali to succeed the retiring U.S. Rep. Bill Flores (R-Bryan).

CD22 open: Texas Values Action PAC endorsed Kathaleen Wall to succeed the retiring U.S. Rep. Pete Olson (R-Sugar Land). The group backed Wall for her unsuccessful run for open CD2 in 2018.

McKinney: Council member La’Shadion Shemwell filed a federal voting rights lawsuit seeking to halt a May 2 recall election. Shemwell, who was elected from a single-member district, faces a citywide recall vote, which the suit argues is unconstitutional.

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