Tribpedia: 2014 Legislative Elections

Tribpedia

With Gov. Rick Perry’s announcement that he won’t seek a fourth term, statewide races have popped wide open for the first time in years, with wide-ranging implications for Texas legislators. As some seek to move into new jobs, they’re leaving their former offices up for grabs — and fierce electioneering.

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Burton, Shelton Face Off in Primary Runoff Battle

Tea Party candidate Konni Burton and former state Rep. Mark Shelton are vying to represent Senate District 10 in a Republican runoff election.
Tea Party candidate Konni Burton and former state Rep. Mark Shelton are vying to represent Senate District 10 in a Republican runoff election.

Former state Rep. Mark Shelton and Tea Party favorite Konni Burton are vying in a Republican runoff election for the state Senate seat left open by Wendy Davis. It's a swing district that both political parties are paying close attention to.

Pictured are (clockwise, from top left) Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, state Sen. Dan Patrick, state Rep. Dan Branch and state Sen. Ken Paxton.
Pictured are (clockwise, from top left) Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, state Sen. Dan Patrick, state Rep. Dan Branch and state Sen. Ken Paxton.

Analysis: For the GOP, This is the Year of the Hunter

The Republican establishment is finding itself in the role of the hunted, as conservatives — especially in statewide races — dominate the political conversation. 

From left to right, state Sen. Bob Deuell, R-Greenville, state Sen. Jane Nelson, R-Flower Mound, and former state Sen. David Sibley, R-Waco.
From left to right, state Sen. Bob Deuell, R-Greenville, state Sen. Jane Nelson, R-Flower Mound, and former state Sen. David Sibley, R-Waco.

Analysis: A Movable Definition of Conservative

The Texas Senate's swing to the right started more than 20 years ago, when the incumbents' definition of extreme simply meant a Republican had entered the Capitol. Now some of those same Republicans are under fire for being too liberal.

Don Huffines, a North Texas developer who is running for state Senate, and state Sen. Ken Paxton, who is running for attorney general.
Don Huffines, a North Texas developer who is running for state Senate, and state Sen. Ken Paxton, who is running for attorney general.

Among Conservatives, Taxing Districts Create a Rift

In 2013, developer Don Huffines and state Sen. Ken Paxton backed the expansion of a taxing district in North Texas — a practice that isn’t uncommon, but that has exposed a fiscal rift among conservatives.

From left to right: U.S. Rep. Ralph Hall, Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, SBOE member Pat Hardy, state Rep. Stefani Carter and state Sen. Bob Deuell.
From left to right: U.S. Rep. Ralph Hall, Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, SBOE member Pat Hardy, state Rep. Stefani Carter and state Sen. Bob Deuell.

Analysis: Runoffs Put Incumbents on the Brink

For political challengers, a runoff can be good news: They lived to fight another day. For incumbent officeholders, runoffs are fraught with the idea that voters are shopping for someone new. 

Pictured are (clockwise, from top left) Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, state Sen. Dan Patrick, state Rep. Dan Branch and state Sen. Ken Paxton.
Pictured are (clockwise, from top left) Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, state Sen. Dan Patrick, state Rep. Dan Branch and state Sen. Ken Paxton.

Tone of Races Could Grow Nastier During Runoffs

Candidates in several races came out swinging during the primary season, and that is not expected to ebb during the runoff campaign — particularly in the GOP races for lieutenant governor and attorney general.

2014 Primary Cost Per Vote for Texas Candidates

In competitive races, a candidate will ideally get the best bang for his or her buck. Use our interactive to see how much each candidate for a state office spent (or did not spend) for each vote he or she received in the March 4 primary. 

On Wednesday morning, Reeve, Evan, Ross and Emily — with help from Morgan, Aman and Jim — discussed the results of the 2014 primary election in front of a live audience at the Austin Club.

TribCast: A Post-Primary Debrief

On Wednesday morning, Reeve, Evan, Ross and Emily — with help from Morgan, Aman and Jim — discussed the results of the 2014 primary election in front of a live audience at the Austin Club.