Republican Fred Rangel (38%) definitely qualified for the HD125 runoff, and a three-way scramble for second appeared to go to former San Antonio council member Ray Lopez (19.4%), who edged out Coda Rayo-Garza (19.0%) by just 22 votes. Former Rep. Art Reyna (D-San Antonio) finished fourth with 17% after fading on Election Day (He was in second in early voting.). Democrat Steve Huerta was last with 6% of the vote.
Lopez’s second-place finish is not a lock. Overseas mail ballots, potential provisional ballots and a possible recount could conceivably vault Rayo-Garza into second.
Rangel will enter the special runoff for HD125 as the frontrunner, reminiscent of a November 2015 special election for nearby HD118. Just as in that election, the Republican candidate received fewer votes than the collective group of Democrats but nonetheless received more than any one of them. In HD118, John Lujan (R-San Antonio) defeated Tomas Uresti (D-San Antonio) in the runoff and served out the unexpired term. Lujan never cast a vote on the House floor, as he was defeated by Uresti in the general election. Unlike that election, the winner of the HD125 runoff will serve at least part of a regular legislative session.
Turnout for the special election was 6.0% of registered voters, placing it in the middle of the pack for a Bexar Co. special legislative election since 2015.
HD79: Rep. Art Fierro (D-El Paso) was sworn in today (Tuesday) in the House chamber. He won the January 29 special election outright.
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