Wallisville oil company president and conservative activist David “Mayes” Middleton has filed paperwork establishing a campaign committee for a potential primary challenge of two-term Rep. Wayne Faircloth (R-Dickinson). Middleton, a board member of the Texas Public Policy Foundation* and the Empower Texans Foundation, contributed more than $50K to conservative Republican candidates in 2016.
Faircloth did not have a primary opponent in 2016. He defeated Texas City insurance agent Bob Senter, 66%-34%, in the 2014 primary and went on to win an open-seat race in the general election. In 2012, Faircloth came in first in a three-way primary and won the runoff over former Chambers Co. Comm. Bill Wallace, 56%-44%. He went on to lose the general election to then-Rep. Craig Eiland (D-Galveston).
Empower Texans endorsed Faircloth in his 2012 general election, calling him “the kind of principled citizen-leader Texans want and need in the Legislature.” The group endorsed him again for the 2014 primary. Faircloth received a “C-minus” on the 2015 Fiscal Responsibility Index, the scorecard produced by Empower Texans. The group has not yet released its 2017 scorecard.
HD23 includes all of Chambers Co. and about 40% of Galveston Co. Middleton is from Chambers Co., and Faircloth is from Galveston Co. Growth in Chambers Co. has given it increasing clout in the determining the district’s representative, but its electorate is still smaller than the Galveston Co. portion of the district. Faircloth received 42% of the vote in Chambers Co. in his 2012 runoff against one of its former county commissioners and 66% in Galveston Co.
* MIddleton is no longer on TPPF’s board. The group’s bylaws dictate that board members automatically relinquish their seats as soon as they announce or file for state/federal office.
See our 2018 Challengers page for all 145 of the challengers and open seat candidates who we confirm have taken a formal step toward running for state and federal office from Texas in 2018.
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