HD10: Rep. John Wray (R-Waxahachie) announced he would not seek re-election to a fourth term. “These elected jobs are not meant to be lifetime positions,” Wray said in a statement. “It is time for me to return full time to Ellis County and join my fellow citizens to elect the next conservative state representative.” Wray has not faced a fellow Republican since winning the 2014 nomination in a runoff over T.J. Fabby, 53%-47%. Yesterday (Tuesday), Waxahachie Army veteran and former rancher Tripp Bryant announced he would seek the seat. Wray’s retirement likely opens the door to more candidates and a highly competitive race. Four candidates, including Wray, sought the seat in 2014 following the retirement of former Rep. Jim Pitts (R-Waxahachie).
Wray is the third legislator to officially forgo re-election, joining Rep. Jonathan Stickland (R-Bedford), who surprised movement conservatives with his retirement announcement, and former Rep. Eric Johnson (D-Dallas), who resigned after being elected mayor of Dallas.
HD100 special: Gov. Greg Abbott (R) ordered a November 5 special election to fill the unexpired term of former Rep. Eric Johnson (D-Dallas), who was elected mayor of Dallas last month. The election coincides with the statewide constitutional amendment election. Candidates must file with the Secretary of State’s office by September 4. Early voting begins October 21.
Meanwhile, Dallas attorney and former Dallas Co. Criminal Court Judge Rob Cañas established a campaign committee for a potential run for the seat.
HD142: Houston transit business owner Richard Bonton re-authorized his campaign account for a potential primary rematch against Rep. Harold Dutton (D-Houston). Bonton lost the 2018 primary to Dutton, 65%-35%. Bonton raised $5K and spent $67K for that race.
CD22: Democratic challenger Sri Kulkarni said his campaign raised $420K during the second quarter.
Republican Party Chair: Former U.S. Rep. Allen West (R-Fla.) announced he would explore a run for state Republican Party Chair, forgoing a challenge of U.S. Rep. Colin Allred (D-Dallas) or a primary challenge of U.S. Sen. John Cornyn (R). Incumbent Chair James Dickey is seeking re-election.
Orange Co.: County Judge Carl Thibodeaux, who was appointed in March following the resignation of former County Judge Dean Crooks (R), announced he was resigning pending the naming of a successor. County Comm. John Gothia (R) also resigned to pursue the post. Thibodeaux will appoint Gothia’s successor, and then the full court will appoint Thibodeaux’s successor. Gothia planned to run for the seat in 2020 regardless of who is appointed.
Houston: District F council member Steve Le announced he would not seek re-election. At least five people, including former council member Richard Nguyen, had already established campaign committees or announced plans to run. Le ousted Nguyen in a 2015 runoff by 230 votes.
Midland: Former pastor Patrick Payton announced he would challenge Mayor Jerry Morales. Payton is credited with leading a 2012 effort to pass a $163M bond package for Midland ISD. Also in the race is flower shop owner Jenny Cudd.
Weslaco: A total of 173 people have voted during the first three days of early voting in the special election to fill the D4 council seat vacated by Jerry Tafolla, who pleaded guilty to federal bribery charges in April. Four candidates filed for the unexpired term.
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