SD19 special: Pleasanton retired game warden Pete Flores and San Antonio real estate agent Carlos Antonio Raymond filed as Republicans for the special election to fill the remaining two-plus years of former Sen. Carlos Uresti’s (D-San Antonio) term. Flores received 40% of the vote in the 2016 general election against Uresti. Raymond lost the 2018 Republican primary for HD117 to Michael Berlanga, 72%-28%, and ran unsuccessfully for the seat in 2016 as a write-in candidate, receiving 175 votes.

They join former Harlandale ISD board president Jesse Jay Alaniz, who filed yesterday. With three Republicans now in the race, the odds that one of them will make a runoff against either Rep. Roland Gutierrez (D-San Antonio) or former Rep. and U.S. Rep. Pete Gallego (D-Alpine) grow longer. A possible third Democrat, San Antonio attorney and longtime Democratic activist Charlie Urbina Jones, recently reactivated his campaign committee for the race, suggesting both parties’ voters will be split among several contenders.

Candidates for the July 31 special election must file with the Secretary of State by Monday.

Independent Candidates: Nine candidates for state and federal office running as independents met Thursday’s deadline to file their applications and signatures with the Secretary of State. Of those, the application of Kesha Rogers (CD9) has been certified. A spokesman for the office said the remaining applications are still being reviewed.

A single application was filed for a candidate in HD6, CD2, CD16, CD18, CD21, CD22, CD25 and CD27. Tyler rabbi Neal Katz is the only person who filed a declaration of intent to seek HD6 as an independent. For the other offices listed, more than one person filed declarations of intent, so we do not know whose applications are being reviewed. A final list of certified candidate is expected to be released on Monday.

None of the eight independent candidates for governor or six independent candidates for U.S. Senate met the deadline.

Sixty-eight Texans filed declarations of intent to run as independent candidates for state and federal offices in 2018, up from 15 for 2016. Candidates running for Congress, state senator and state representative needed to collect the lesser of 500 signatures or 5% of all votes cast for governor in 2014 in the district. The U.S. Senate and statewide candidates needed 47,183 signatures, which is 1% of the votes cast for governor in 2014. Only signatures from registered voters who did not participate in a party’s nominating process can be counted.

One final filing period remains. Write-in candidates can file their declarations and signatures with the Secretary of State between July 21 and August 20. Write-in candidates for statewide office need 5,000 signatures. Write-in candidates for legislative and congressional offices need the lesser of 500 signatures or 2% of the votes cast for governor in 2014.

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