FIGHT, FIGHT, FIGHT
With elections a mere week away, it’s time for laser focus on the races right here in our state that matter the most. Texas has added over 700,000 voters to the rolls since the presidential election, much of that increase occurring in our largest urban counties. But some big exurb counties outside major cities, and the Rio Grande Valley counties have seen double digit growth as well.
Overall, since the last midterms in 2018, Texas voter registration is up 12%. While voter registration drives have traditionally been the purview of Democrats, I find reason to believe that this time the tables have turned.
The top five counties who’ve added the most voters (Comal, Kaufman, Parker, Rockwall and Williamson), all have Republican majorities. Exurb counties around big cities have seen 20% increases. This seems to highlight the fracturing between urban progressives and their more conservative suburban counterparts. Most importantly perhaps, the Valley has seen double digit growth in voter registration.
And here’s an important signal as to who those voters may be: Derek Ryan, a consultant for the GOP, analyzed early voting results to date and found that of these early voters, “46 percent had singular GOP voting histories compared to only 31 percent with a singular Democratic voting history.” What that indicates to me is an energized Republican base.
And there’s more to be optimistic about. AG Paxton has just announced that his Election Integrity Division is devoting a special team of agency lawyers, investigators, and support staff to oversee the midterm election and give rapid response to concerns of election officials and the public.
“The foundation of our constitutional republic is a secure and transparent ballot,” Paxton said. “It is why my office remains ever vigilant in defending the integrity of our elections. We are committed to following and ensuring compliance with all relevant state and federal laws.”
If you have any suspicion of election irregularities to report at any time in this election season, you can simply click on this link to report to the Paxton task force.
THE TOP TEN
With that in mind, I want to focus our attention on The Top Ten to Watch in Texas. Big shoutout to Brad Johnson at The Texan for compiling this list. I’ve put stars by the races that most need our support, whether financial or activist.
1. Gubernatorial: Obviously top of ticket for us, with Abbott vs. O’Rourke. It does appear that Abbott is pulling further ahead, as his lead in polling approaches double digits after the debate last month.
2. Attorney General: Sitting Attorney General Paxton vs. Rochelle Garza. Polling numbers look comfortable for the incumbent, but suffice it to say this is one we have to win. Non-negotiable.
*3. U.S. House Representative, Congressional District 28: The incumbent, moderate Democrat Henry Cuellar vs. Cassy Garcia in a district that covers a lot of the border and stretches up to San Antonio. Even though Cuellar is on the right side of the border and abortion issues, as Congressman Chip Roy pointed out, Henry would still be voting for Nancy Pelosi for Speaker. That dog won’t hunt.
*4. U.S. House Representative, Congressional District 34: Incumbent and MAGA upstart Mayra Flores is angling to be the poster child for a South Texas swing to the right as she faces Vicente Gonzalez, an incumbent from another district. The newly redrawn 34th is on the Gulf Coast. The race is currently considered a toss-up. This is a must-win.
*5. Texas State Senator, Senate District 27: In a race with no incumbent, Democrat Morgan LaMantia faces Republican Adam Hinojosa. This district is close to home, as it stretches from the Valley to north of Corpus.
*6. Texas State Representative, House District 37: In another race with no incumbent, this one is a hope-to-flip in a district that encompasses Brownsville as Republican Janie Lopez faces Democrat Luis Villareal. Lopez is a San Benito ISD board member.
*7. Texas State Representative, House District 118: In this San Antonio district, incumbent John Lujan (R-San Antonio) faces Democrat challenger Frank Ramirez.
*8. County Judge, Tarrant County: Republican Tim O’Hare vs. Democrat Deborah Peoples, in a bid to rescue Ft. Worth’s red roots from the purple dumpster.
**9. County Judge, Harris County: This is a personal grudge match, so I gave it two stars, feeling this race deserves special attention—Democrat Lina Hidalgo vs. Republican Alex Mealer. Incumbent Hidalgo should have already resigned. She is a complete disaster.Three of her staffers have been indicted for corruption allegations. The Texas Comptroller has found conclusive evidence of illegal police defunding in Harris County at Hidalgo’s behest. And now the secretary of state has found in its forensic audit “serious breaches” in Hidalgo’s conduct of the 2020 elections. Enough already. This is our “throw the bum out” race.
10. Austin Mayoral race: Republican retread Kirk Watson vs. Celia Israel. I didn’t put any stars on this one because, frankly, I feel that at this point Austin is a lost cause, no matter who they vote in. Both candidates are former State Reps. I fail to see anything worth fighting for in this race. I apologize for the cynicism. And to the city that broke my heart I say, Austin, you well deserve whatever you get. Lots of luck.
Just a quick checklist for all you voters on how to keep it clean:
1. Vote in person on the day of the election. This is simple guidance to help defeat machine cheating: overwhelm the algorithm.
2. Check with your local election official, usually the County Clerk, to ensure that all races are listed on the ballots, and that there is an adequate number of Republican ballots. Running out of Republican ballots has become a favorite rouse of opposition operatives.
3. If when at your polling place you are told you already voted, inform them immediately that you are filing a police report for stolen identity. Call the police and file the report, then notify the AG’s Election Integrity task force at firstname.lastname@example.org
4. If filling out a paper ballot, use a blue pen. We’ll explain later.
Keep it clean, y’all.
TAKE ACTION NOW
This is the week that undecided and independent voters are swayed, and complacent Republican voters are energized. It’s time to get out the vote and you can help!
You can phone bank for the worthy candidates above no matter where you live. It’s simple. Go to our fellow Texan’s website below (Mighty American Strikeforce) to fill out the form to volunteer. They need your help.
And let ‘em know, Texas Fights Outloud sent you.