Six pro-public education legislators ousted in Republican… | TCTA
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Six pro-public education legislators ousted in Republican primaries; four more face runoffs

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Primary voting took place across 15 states on Tuesday, March 5, commonly referred to as Super Tuesday. Full results of federal and state races are available here.

In Texas, every state House district and roughly half of the Senate districts were up for election. Most incumbents were uncontested or only faced mild opposition, but after a decisive defeat on school vouchers last session, Gov. Greg Abbott vowed to support primary challengers to the Republican representatives who opposed him. Abbott also targeted House Speaker Dade Phelan, who will head to a runoff in May.

Of the 21 Republicans who voted against the last voucher proposal, five opted not to run for reelection, inviting crowded primaries to replace outgoing incumbents. With few exceptions, the remaining anti-voucher Republicans faced stiff opposition in their respective primaries; six were defeated outright, four will advance to runoffs against the governor’s pro-voucher candidates, and six retained their seats.

Increasing pro-voucher numbers in the House will make it much harder for public education supporters to continue to stave off the diversion of public funds to private schools in the next legislative session.

The runoff elections will take place on May 28, with early voting from May 20-24. In many rural districts, the winner of the primary (and subsequent runoff, if applicable) is virtually guaranteed to win the general election in November.

The following districts will have runoff elections featuring anti-voucher Republican incumbents:

  • HD 1 (far Northeast Texas): Gary VanDeaver (incumbent) vs. Chris Spencer
  • HD 33 (Rockwall area): Justin Holland (incumbent) vs. Katrina Pierson
  • HD 44 (Seguin/Gonzales area): John Kuempel (incumbent) vs. Alan Schoolcraft
  • HD 58 (South of Ft. Worth): DeWayne Burns (incumbent) vs. Helen Kerwin

Click here to see if you live in any of these districts and make plans to vote in the runoff in May. You can vote in the runoff even if you did not vote in this year’s March primary; however, if you voted in the Democratic primary this year, you cannot vote in the Republican runoff (and vice versa).