Associated Republicans of Texas and the Hispanic Voter Network announced they were targeting several Democrat-held House seats “in an effort to expand the map for Republicans in the Texas House.” The six districts are listed below with the general election results:
- HD31, won by Rep. Ryan Guillen (D-Rio Grande City), 58%-42%
- HD34, won by Rep. Abel Herrero (D-Robstown), 59%-41%
- HD37, won by Rep. Alex Dominguez (D-Brownsville), who was unopposed
- HD38, won by Rep. Eddie Lucio III (D-Brownsville), who was unopposed
- HD41, won by Rep. Bobby Guerra (D-Mission), 58%-42%; and
- HD74, won by Rep. Eddie Morales Jr. (D-Eagle Pass), 54%-46%.
Several of these districts shifted dramatically toward Republicans since 2016 by our principal measure of partisan lean, and they have been shifting red-ward for a while. We described this trend in detail in our pre-election analyses of these districts.
HD31 has moved 12.8 points toward Republicans over the past four years, and the average statewide Democrat received just 47% of the vote (measured head-to-head), down 10 points since 2016 and nearly 21 points since 2008. The district was just 1.4 points bluer than the state as a whole in 2020. HD74 has moved 12.1 points redder since 2016, and the average statewide Democrat received 48.5%
HD37 also saw a double-digit shift toward the Republicans over the past four years, but it remained 16 points bluer than the state as a whole in 2020. HD41 was 11 points bluer than the state, and HD38 was 14.5 points bluer than the state in 2020. HD34 was 7 points bluer than the state in 2020, down from 13 points in 2016 but relatively unchanged since 2018.
Each of the contested incumbents over-performed the Democratic ticket in their districts in 2020:
- Guillen +11.7 points
- Herrero +7.1 points
- Morales +5.4 points running for an open seat
- Guerra +1.6 points
Democratic over-performance cuts into the red shift in partisan lean. In Guillen’s case, his over-performance almost offset it. Dominguez and Lucio have never faced a Republican general election opponent. In fact, no Republican has run for HD37 since 1996.
ART and HVN are looking to capitalize on Republican gains throughout predominantly Hispanic/Latino South and West Texas. In 2020, President Trump received 39% of the vote in counties that are at least 75% Hispanic/Latino, which represented a 10-point improvement over his 2016 performance.
“Gone are the days of one-party dominance in South Texas,” said Aaron De Leon, ART’s political director. “We look forward to recruiting and funding strong candidates in the region.”
©2021 Texas Election Source LLC