Most of the national attention, when it has turned to Texas this year, has been focused on U.S. Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-El Paso) and his challenge of U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R). Polls have consistently shown him trailing by just single-digits in a state that hasn’t sent a Democrat to the U.S. Senate in 30 years. O’Rourke shattered fundraising records in the third quarter. Cruz is less popular among virtually every demographic and political group than Gov. Greg Abbott (R). While those are all reasons for optimism, if you’re on Team Blue, the race has shown no signs of tightening further.

A Quinnipiac poll conducted this month showed the same Cruz lead as a month earlier. This could be indicative of O’Rourke’s inability to make up the remaining ground, regardless of his financial advantage. It could also be indicative of basic math.

The national media are largely ignoring the gubernatorial race between Gov. Greg Abbott (R) and former Dallas Co. Sheriff Lupe Valdez (D), probably because most polls since August have shown Abbott leading by 16-20 points. These are the same voters who will decide the U.S. Senate race here, and a 20-point Abbott win would leave very little room for O’Rourke to catch Cruz.

Let’s get hypothetical. Let’s say that Abbott wins by 20 points, 59%-39%.

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