2018 elections | KERA News

2018 elections

From Texas Standard:

Democratic Congressman Beto O'Rourke wants to unseat Texas Sen. Ted Cruz. O'Rourke's campaign has enjoyed record fundraising success, and he's a star among national Democrats. But to win, he needs to generate excitement among potential voters, especially those who don't normally turn out to vote in Texas elections.

Congressman Beto O’Rourke (D-El Paso) says he raised a massive $10.4 million between April and June for his campaign to unseat Republican Texas Sen. Ted Cruz.

The sum brings O’Rourke’s total raised since he began his campaign to more than $23 million. He ended the first quarter of 2018 with more than $8 million in cash on hand.

Abbott: Sue Ogrocki; Valdez: Richard W. Rodriguez / AP

Republican Gov. Greg Abbott and his Democratic challenger, former Dallas County Sheriff Lupe Valdez, have agreed — to a point — to debate at least once this fall.

And if the event comes off as proposed on Sept. 28, there will be some stiff competition: Friday night football and the first day of the State Fair of Texas.

Mike Davis didn't think Donald Trump could get elected.

Davis is the kind of Republican who backed Ohio governor John Kasich in the 2016 primaries, the kind of Republican who subscribes to the Wall Street Journal. Davis, 64, is the former mayor of Dunwoody, Ga., a small city in the state's 6th Congressional District, one of the most highly-educated districts in the country.

Despite all the Democrats' special election wins, high voter turnout in primaries and polls showing strong party enthusiasm heading into the midterms, the fact remains that Democrats are still stuck at their lowest level of power in nearly a century.

Even though President Trump's poll numbers have stabilized, party leaders see 2018 as a chance to seize back one key lever of government: the House of Representatives. But Democrats and their core voters can't seem to agree on the best direction to take.

Todd Wiseman / Texas Tribune

The 2018 elections will move forward without any tweaks to Texas' political maps.

via Texas Tribune

Despite nine candidates on the ballot, Republican Michael Cloud drew enough support to win Saturday's special election to fill former U.S. Rep. Blake Farenthold's seat, sparing the GOP a runoff in the 27th District. 

Former President Barack Obama has kept a low profile since he left office. It was just a coincidence that the man who so inspires Democrats made one of his rare public appearances in Beverly Hills on Thursday night during what has been a mostly dispiriting week for members of his party.

Updated at 12:35 a.m. ET

National progressives scored a major coup over the Democratic establishment Tuesday night as 28-year-old activist Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez upset House Democratic Caucus chairman and longtime New York Rep. Joe Crowley.

Julia Reihs / KUT

Kim Olson is running to be Texas Agriculture Commissioner, but when she addressed the Young Democrats Caucus at the Texas Democratic Party Convention in Fort Worth on Friday, she didn’t spend much time talking about farms.

Instead, she had a message for the under-40 crowd: It is up to you.

Joan Brook for The Texas Tribune

FORT WORTH — Even before Texas Democrats’ convention officially got underway here this weekend, its top candidates were chomping at the bit to seize on the biggest story in the country: thousands of immigrant children being separated from their parents at the border.

Christopher Connelly / KERA News

Thousands of Democrats will gather in Fort Worth starting Thursday afternoon for the Texas Democratic Party Convention.

Political party conventions are always about the future – the next election, to be specific, but also the five- and 10-year plan for growth.

The last couple of decades for Texas Republicans have been pretty rock solid. In 2014, Gov. Greg Abbott won the election by 20 points. And in the 2018 primaries, Republicans set records for voter turnout in an off-year election.

Texas' top Republican lawmakers spent the morning Friday revving up the crowd at their convention in San Antonio. Now the heavy lifting of this biennial event begins.

The delegates vote on a party chairman and then begin debate on the state party platform. The (currently) 38-page document lists the party's priorities, plans and ideals.

Thousands of Republicans are in San Antonio this week for the state convention. They'll bring plenty of red, white and blue clothing – along with elephant hats. But in the midst of the spectacle, there's work getting done by party officials and delegates. Here's a little checklist of what to watch for over the next three days.

Christopher Connelly / KERA News

Dallas voters may have the chance to weigh in on whether workers across the city get paid when they’re too sick to work.

A coalition of Texas-based community groups says it's turning in more than 110,000 signatures to the city clerk's office in a petition to put a paid sick leave ordinance on the ballot in November.

Marjorie Kamys Cotera / Bob Daemmrich / The Texas Tribune

Several thousand Texans will descend on San Antonio and Fort Worth for the biennial Republican and Democratic conventions to hear from the state’s most prominent politicians, adopt new platforms and elect party leaders.

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon and Martin do Nascimento / KUT News

The U.S. Senate race between Ted Cruz and Beto O'Rourke got personal this week when the incumbent attacked the challenger over a tax fraud case involving his mother.

Laura Skelding: O'Rourke/Douglas Young: Cruz

WASHINGTON — U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz has some breathing space from U.S. Rep. Beto O'Rourke, according to a new poll released by Quinnipiac University on Wednesday. 

Doug Young: O'Rourke/Michael Stravato: Cruz

EDINBURG — Flanked by a nine-piece mariachi band, U.S. Rep. Vicente Gonzalez leaned on Beto O'Rourke’s roots while introducing his congressional colleague to a crowd of Rio Grande Valley residents at a recent campaign event.

CHRISTOPHER CONNELLY / KERA NEWS

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Lupe Valdez owes $12,000-plus in overdue property taxes on seven properties, a previously unreported shortfall that could prove embarrassing as she tries to unseat Republican Greg Abbott in November.

From Texas Standard.

If you didn’t vote in this week’s primary runoff elections, you’re hardly alone. In fact, you are in the vast majority. According to the Texas Election Source, fewer than 1 million ballots were cast in both parties’ primary runoffs. For the Democrats, it was the lowest primary runoff turnout with a governor’s race on the ballot in almost a century. The Texas Election Source reports the Republicans actually had one of the highest turnouts for a runoff election year, but the percentage of voter participation was still just around 3 percent.

Bill Zeeble / KERA News

Gov. Greg Abbott officially has a challenger for the midterm elections. Former Dallas County Sheriff Lupe Valdez has won the Democratic gubernatorial runoff against Houston businessman Andrew White. She is the first openly gay and Latina nominee for Texas governor. 

Christopher Connelly / KERA News

On Tuesday night, Lupe Valdez became the first openly gay and the first Latina candidate to win a major party nomination for Texas governor.

Christopher Connelly / KERA News

Texas Democrats will choose their nominee to run for governor in Tuesday's runoff election. None of the nine Democratic gubernatorial candidates who ran in the March primary won more than 50 percent of the vote. So the top two vote-getters are now facing off: Former Dallas County Sheriff Lupe Valdez, won 43 percent of the vote, and Andrew White, from Houston, got 27 percent.

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT News

The March primary elections knocked out dozens of Democratic and Republican candidates in crowded races across North Texas.

But not every race had a clear winner. If a single candidate did not win a majority of the votes in the primary, the two candidates who earned the most votes head into a runoff election. 

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PLANO – Since 1991, U.S. Rep. Sam Johnson has represented a section of Texas north of Dallas. The 87-year-old Vietnam War veteran last year announced his plans to retire.

Christopher Connelly / KERA News

When Rep. Jeb Hensarling announced he’d be stepping down as the congressman from Texas’ 5th District, eight Republicans scrambled to replace the staunch conservative. Now the top two vote-getters from the March primary face off in Tuesday’s runoff election: Hensarling’s former campaign manager Bunni Pounds and state Rep. Lance Gooden of Terrell.

Christopher Connelly / KERA News

The 32nd Congressional District in Texas is on the radar for national Democrats. They think they can win the seat and give Republican Congressman Pete Sessions the boot after more than 20 years in office. But they still don’t have a candidate yet for this district that covers a chunk of North Dallas and suburbs like Garland and Richardson. Now, the two Democratic hopefuls are competing in the May 22 runoff.

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