Three hotly contested Tarrant Co. Republican primary races feature candidates backed by conservative groups and individuals opposed to Speaker Joe Straus (R-San Antonio) facing off against what they call “the establishment.” In HD92, Rep. Jonathan Stickland (R-Bedford), a vocal opponent of the Speaker, seeks a third term as he faces Bedford pastor Scott Fisher. In HD94, Rep. Tony Tinderholt (R-Arlington) seeks a second term as he faces Arlington attorney Andrew Piel. In HD99, anti-Straus groups are on the offensive as Fort Worth businessman Bo French challenges 8-term Rep. Charlie Geren (R-Fort Worth), one of Straus’s top lieutenants.
At least two Tarrant Co. representatives have been defeated in each election cycle since 2006, including four in the Republican primary. Since 2012, Reps. Giovanni Capriglione (R-Southlake), Matt Krause (R-Fort Worth) and Tony Tinderholt (R-Arlington) ousted Republican incumbents as the Tea Party rose to prominence in the county.