Secretary of State Ruth Hughs announced her resignation effective May 31 after the Senate did not confirm her appointment. Gov. Greg Abbott (R) appointed Hughs, then the chair of the Texas Workforce Commission, in August 2019.
She was the state’s top election official through the 2020 election, succeeding David Whitley, who resigned on the last day of the 2019 legislative session after Democrats blocked his confirmation. Whitley presided over his agency’s effort to flag around 95K registered voters as non-citizens based on comparisons to Dept. of Public Safety data. During his confirmation hearing, then-Sen. Kirk Watson (D-Austin) said he believed Whitley’s goal was to create an appearance of widespread illegal voting – a charge Whitley denied.
Hughs’s nomination appeared to lack sufficient Republican support after her office approved several Harris Co. voting initiatives since targeted in Republican-led election legislation and her top election deputy called the 2020 election “smooth and secure.” She was not given a hearing from the Nominations Committee.
Abbott will nominate a successor who will not face Senate confirmation until 2023.
GOV: Former Reps. Matt Rinaldi (R-Irving) and Jonathan Stickland (R-Bedford) endorsed former Sen. Don Huffines (R-Dallas) over Gov. Greg Abbott (R).
Conservative Republicans of Texas PAC released a video, “Texas Victory for Trump,” promoting Agriculture Comm. Sid Miller (R) as a conservative alternative to Abbott. The PAC’s video is not affiliated with Miller or any other candidate.
Legislative Deadlines: Tuesday is the last day the House may consider Senate Bills for second reading. Wednesday is the last day the Senate may consider House Bills for second or third reading (The Senate often does both on the same day.). Saturday is the last day conference committee reports may be printed to provide for a 24-hour layout, and Sunday is the last day the Legislature may adopt conference committee reports or concur in the other chamber’s amendments. The 87th Legislature, Regular Session adjourns May 31.
Runoffs: Early voting begins tomorrow (Monday) for runoff elections being held on June 5. Unlike state and county primary elections, runoff dates vary by local jurisdiction.
Arlington: The Fort Worth Star-Telegram reiterated its endorsement of Jim Ross in the mayoral runoff over council member Michael Glaspie and Nikkie Hunter for open D3 over Diana Saleh.
Fort Worth: The Deborah Peoples mayoral campaign released a new ad, “People,” highlighting her agenda.
The Fort Worth Star-Telegram reiterated its endorsement of Mattie Parker for mayor and council members Jungus Jordan and Kelly Allen Gray. It endorsed Leonard Firestone for open D7 over Zeb Pent and reiterated its endorsement of Elizabeth Beck for open D9 over Fernando Peralta.
San Antonio: The San Antonio Express-News reiterated its endorsement of council member John Courage over Patrick Von Dohlen and its endorsement of challengers Mario Bravo in D1 and Jalen McKee-Rodriguez in D2. It endorsed Phyllis Viagran for the open D3 runoff over former Rep. Tomas Uresti (D-San Antonio) and Rudy Lopez for the open D5 runoff over Teri Castillo.
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