Harris Co. election officials completed their recount of the HD128 primary runoff election. Briscoe Cain defeated Rep. Wayne Smith (R-Baytown) by 23 votes.
In a statement, Smith said he had “no regrets” and would continue to represent the district until January. “For 14 years, I have worked on the issues that really impact the voters most.” In a statement, Cain said his supporters should applaud the recount as it ensures “integrity of the voting process.” Noting he was heavily outspent in the campaign, Cain thanked voters’ decision to “restore conservative representation to District 128.” Cain faces Libertarian Ken Lowder in the general election. Lowder received 9% of the vote against Smith in 2014.
Smith won 73% of the vote in his home base of Baytown, but Cain won his home of Deer Park (67%), La Porte (63%) and Pasadena (64%). Turnout in Baytown was 6.3%, lower than the 9% turnout in Deer Park. That difference in turnout secured Cain’s win.
Cain won 55% of the absentee vote, while Smith won 51% of the in-person vote (54% early, 48% on Election Day). Absentee voters represented 21% of all votes cast in the race, up from 8% in the primary election. Cain won the absentee vote in the primary. Cain received 705 absentee votes in the primary and 711 absentee votes in the runoff.
Interestingly, 27 people cast ballots in HD128 but did not vote for either Cain or Smith.