One Special Election Ordered as Another Becomes Necessary

Rep. Leo Pacheco (D-San Antonio) announced he would resign in the next few weeks to accept a teaching position at San Antonio College. A special election will be required to fill his unexpired term.

Southside ISD trustee Katie Farias (D), daughter-in-law of former Rep. Joe Farias (D-San Antonio) and an aide to Sen. Roland Gutierrez (D-San Antonio), announced she would be a candidate in the special election. San Antonio attorney Desi Martinez previously established a campaign committee to challenge Pacheco in next year’s Democratic primary. Former Rep. John Lujan (R-San Antonio), who won this seat in a special election, could also be a candidate.

Special Session: The Legislature adjourned sine die, ending the first special session, which was effectively over when House Democrats broke quorum weeks ago. A second special session begins tomorrow (Saturday) at noon. It is unclear whether the House will have a quorum when it convenes as an unannounced number of Democrats plan to remain in Washington, D.C., where they are advocating for federal voting rights legislation.

“The Texas House remains committed to fulfilling its responsibilities as soon as our Democratic colleagues return from Washington or from their vacations abroad,” Speaker Dade Phelan (R-Beaumont) said in a statement.

HD10 special: Gov. Greg Abbott (R) ordered an expedited special election for August 31 to fill the unexpired state house term of U.S. Rep. Jake Ellzey (R-Waxahachie). Candidates must file by August 12. Early voting begins August 23.

This creates a very small window for candidates to build up name recognition and raise money if they have not already done so, which would seem to give former Rep. John Wray (R-Waxahachie) a very strong advantage over anyone else who enters the race. As of now, Wray appears to be the only candidate that has taken a formal step toward running. Brian Harrison, a former CD6 candidate and former U.S. Dept. of Housing & Urban Development official, is reportedly considering the race.

HD70: Prosper accountant Jim Herblin reauthorized his campaign committee for a potential primary challenge of Rep. Scott Sanford (R-McKinney). Herblin unsuccessfully challenged Sen. Craig Estes (R-Wichita Falls) in the 2012 Republican primary, losing 65%-35%.

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