Monday, 19 March, 2018

Blue wave meets red wall: Republicans out vote Democrats in Texas primary

Voting sign posted in Travis County Voting sign posted in Travis County
Melinda Barton | 08 March, 2018, 12:36

The number of votes cast in Democratic primaries almost doubled those from four years ago. In November that year, the Democrats running for statewide office were all beaten, just as they have been since 1994.

But statewide in this primary Democrats out-voted Republicans in early balloting, a sign that both of our major political parties are ready to compete.

None of these moves should be too shocking considering this is a party that has used voter ID laws and limited early voting to disenfranchise millions, who gerrymanders their districts to ensure that GOP candidates can win with lower needed votes and who declared total victory in a president that lost the popular vote by millions of voters. The 2002 primary came in the middle of a Republican president's first term. Republican Congressional candidates across the state had pledged fealty to Trump. And it was a particularly big night for Latinas, two of whom (Houston state senator Sylvia Garcia and El Paso County judge Veronica Escobar) won open-seat primaries in heavily Democratic districts and will soon be in Congress.

In an unexpected move, Cruz chose to attack O'Rourke by name before the polls had even closed.

"Left-wing rage may raise a bunch of money from people online, but I don't believe it reflects the views of a majority of Texans", he told reporters after winning the nomination.

Asked in a separate CNN interview if he would respond with his own song, O'Rourke declined.

Parbhoo is emblematic of Texas Democrats who are no longer willing to sit on the political sidelines. Democrat Ralph Northam won the Virginia governor's race in November, even though the Republican candidate, Ed Gillespie, received more votes than any GOP candidate for state office in Virginia's history.

Republicans also increased their presence at the polls in 2018. Ted Cruz and Gov. Greg Abbott, but there's been a surge in numbers of Democratic candidates and voters that reflects nationwide momentum for the left since Trump's election. "And, in that sense, it's becoming a little bit more like California every year".

Rebecca Bell-Metereau, a Texas State University professor, will face off against Erin Zwiener, a Driftwood-based educator, in a runoff for the State Rep. 45 Democratic nomination. But look at the GOP side: There was 50 percent higher turnout for the uncontested GOP Senate primary featuring incumbent Sen.

Each of them hails from solidly Republican districts, but they could be replaced by even more conservative nominees. Another closely watched race was House District 2.

So, in which 2018 primary races will there be a runoff?

. George P. Bush, the Texas land commissioner, won a contested primary after he cozied-up to a president who once called his dad, Jeb, a pathetic person. In the 7th District GOP primary, another who raised $1.1 million finished fourth with just 5,000 votes. "I'm really energized, and I think out people want to go out and be part of a solution". "And I share some of those frustrations". This lack of enthusiasm is particularly striking as the primary there has gotten much attention for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee's unusual efforts to undermine candidate Laura Moser, whom they have criticized for being a Washington insider.

"We are getting our democracy back".

In the 23rd District, which follows hundreds of miles of the Mexican border, five Democrats are looking to unseat Hurd.

At least three of those runoffs will feature women facing each other.

For the first time in more than 25 years, Democrats will be contesting each of Texas' 36 US congressional districts, the party said. According to unofficial returns, Cruz easily fended off four little-known challengers with 85 percent of the vote, while O'Rourke got an underwhelming - but still successful - 62 percent against two rivals.

"It's rivaling a presidential year, which is unprecedented", he said.