GOV: The Lupe Valdez (D) campaign has accepted an invitation to debate Gov. Greg Abbott (R) on September 28 in Austin hosted by Nexstar Media Group. Abbott accepted the invitation seven weeks ago, but Valdez objected to its being on a Friday night and insisted on some questions being asked in Spanish. Telemundo will simulcast the debate in Spanish.
SEN: No debate will occur Friday in Dallas between Sen. Ted Cruz (R) and U.S. Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-El Paso). It was to the be the first of five debates proposed by the Cruz campaign, each in a different city and focused on different policy areas, all on Friday nights. O’Rourke countered that debates should be on different nights and wanted one in El Paso. O’Rourke initially challenged Cruz to six debates, including two in Spanish. Libertarian candidate Neal Dikeman, who does not appear to have been invited to Friday’s proposed debate, previously challenged O’Rourke to two debates.
Meanwhile, a new Emerson College “e-Poll” (PDF) finds the race statistically tied (Cruz 38%, O’Rourke 37%). We mention it solely because the topline has received media and online coverage, but we have strong reservations about the methodology and results. The survey, which was “conducted under the supervision” of an assistant professor, was conducted using via landline phones using interactive voice response and an online panel provided by Survey Monkey.
The same survey finds Gov. Greg Abbott (R) leading Lupe Valdez (D), 48%-28%.
Primary Turnout: Arizona and Florida hold primary elections tomorrow (Tuesday). So far, turnout in Texas (17.0%) ranks 36th out of the 43 states that have held primary elections this year. More than 14% of registered voters in Florida have already cast ballots, and another 1.4M mail ballots have not yet been returned, so that state will pass Texas. In Arizona, election officials are predicting record turnout.
McLennan Co.: Democratic candidate Seth Sutton formally withdrew from the race for District Attorney, leaving Republican Barry Johnson as the lone candidate on the ballot. Johnson defeated incumbent Abel Reyna in the Republican primary. Sutton suspended his campaign in February but remained on the primary election ballot. A potential independent candidate suspended his campaign in May because his ballot application was mistakenly filed with the McLennan County Judge instead of the Secretary of State as required by law.
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