Tribpedia: 2014 Statewide Elections

Tribpedia

The 2014 statewide elections feature more open seats — posts without incumbents seeking re-election — than any Texas election since 1990. And even though presidential ballots attract bigger turnouts, a gubernatorial year with competitive races from the top to the bottom of the ballot should engender some voter interest.

As with the 2012 elections, the courts could have a role to play ...

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Audrey Abbott, left, joins her father, Attorney General and gubernatorial candidate Greg Abbott, to greet (from right) Matthew Tucker, Ellen Tucker, Michael Tucker and Joy Baughman during a block walk on Nov. 9., 2013, in Austin.
Audrey Abbott, left, joins her father, Attorney General and gubernatorial candidate Greg Abbott, to greet (from right) Matthew Tucker, Ellen Tucker, Michael Tucker and Joy Baughman during a block walk on Nov. 9., 2013, in Austin.

In Texas, Some Political Ground Games Go Digital

When most Texas voters think of traditional political campaigns, they envision blockwalking and yard signs. In many races, however, the modern-day "ground game" has gone digital. So has all that changed how politicians run their races?

State Sens. Leticia Van de Putte, D-San Antonio, and Dan Patrick, R-Houston, will face off against each other in the general election for lieutenant governor.
State Sens. Leticia Van de Putte, D-San Antonio, and Dan Patrick, R-Houston, will face off against each other in the general election for lieutenant governor.

Van de Putte Hits Patrick on School Finance Votes

Leticia Van de Putte, the Democratic candidate for lieutenant governor, said Wednesday that her GOP opponent, Dan Patrick, was “rewriting history” by taking credit for the restoration of some education funding cuts. Patrick's campaign hit back at the criticism.

A voting precinct at the Parker Lane United Methodist Church in Austin is shown in November 2013.
A voting precinct at the Parker Lane United Methodist Church in Austin is shown in November 2013.

Analysis: A Lot of Races, But Not as Much Drama

With fewer than 10 weeks left until Election Day, almost all of the Texas races for Congress and the Legislature are all but over. Just a handful of competitive races — one each in the congressional delegation and the state Senate and fewer than a dozen in the House —  remain. 

Texas Tribune Executive Editor Ross Ramsey on WFAA-TV's "Inside Texas Politics" on August 31, 2014.
Texas Tribune Executive Editor Ross Ramsey on WFAA-TV's "Inside Texas Politics" on August 31, 2014.

Inside Texas Politics: Lawyering Up

On this week's edition of WFAA-TV's Inside Texas Politics, we talked about Thursday's ruling by a Travis County district judge that the state's school finance system is unconstitutional, the delay in raising standards on state exams, Gov. Rick Perry addition of a sixth attorney to his legal team and more.

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis, speaks to crowd during a campaign stop at East Austin restaurant Juan in a Million on May 6th, 2014
Democratic gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis, speaks to crowd during a campaign stop at East Austin restaurant Juan in a Million on May 6th, 2014

Davis Draws Praise, Criticism for Education Plans

While recieving praise from education leaders in Austin and fending off fresh criticism about her tax return, Democratic gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis promoted the latest additions to her education reform proposals.

State Sen. Wendy Davis, the Democratic nominee for governor, addressed supporters on Saturday, July 13, 2014, in East Austin as she concluded her "Texans Deserve to Know" tour.
State Sen. Wendy Davis, the Democratic nominee for governor, addressed supporters on Saturday, July 13, 2014, in East Austin as she concluded her "Texans Deserve to Know" tour.

Davis Releases Full Tax Return

The campaign of Democratic gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis on Tuesday publicly released her full 2013 tax return, four days after giving copies to the media with the stipulation that the document couldn't be published in full. The decision came as the Tribune was preparing to publish a story about the limited release. 

 

 

 

Gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis addresses supporters before they canvass for her in East Austin.
Gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis addresses supporters before they canvass for her in East Austin.

Wendy Davis Releases 2013 Tax Information

Wendy Davis earned significantly less income from her legal work in 2013 than in previous years, according to tax documents released Friday by her campaign. But the Democratic gubernatorial candidate also received a six-figure payment that year for her upcoming memoir.

State Sen. Dan Patrick, the Republican candidate for lieutenant governor, speaks at the Texas Business Roundtable candidate forum on Jan. 14, and state Sen. Leticia Van de Putte, the Democratic nominee, addresses delegates at the 2014 Texas Democratic Convention on June 27.
State Sen. Dan Patrick, the Republican candidate for lieutenant governor, speaks at the Texas Business Roundtable candidate forum on Jan. 14, and state Sen. Leticia Van de Putte, the Democratic nominee, addresses delegates at the 2014 Texas Democratic Convention on June 27.

Business Sees Pros of Lieutenant Governor Candidates

State Sens. Dan Patrick and Leticia Van de Putte have taken to promoting their business credentials while campaigning to become the state's lieutenant governor in a race that influential groups say should be good for business.

Lynda Stokes, the mayor of Reno, Texas, testified before the Railroad Commission of Texas on Jan. 21, 2014. She voiced her concern about an increased number of earthquakes around Eagle Mountain Lake.
Lynda Stokes, the mayor of Reno, Texas, testified before the Railroad Commission of Texas on Jan. 21, 2014. She voiced her concern about an increased number of earthquakes around Eagle Mountain Lake.

Railroad Commission Hopefuls Discuss Disposal Well Plan

Two candidates for the Railroad Commission welcomed the agency's newly proposed requirements for disposal well applications, saying they were a good first step in addressing the spate of earthquakes that have shaken up parts of North Texas.

GOP gubernatorial nominee Greg Abbott speaking at the RedState Gathering in Fort Worth, Texas on August 9, 2014.
GOP gubernatorial nominee Greg Abbott speaking at the RedState Gathering in Fort Worth, Texas on August 9, 2014.

Abbott Calls Davis "Obama's Ideological Twin"

Dismissing his opponent as “Barack Obama’s ideological twin,” Attorney General Greg Abbott on Saturday expressed confidence that he will trounce Democrat Wendy Davis in the gubernatorial election in November. Asked about a Davis TV ad on his dissenting opinion in a 1993 case involving a woman raped by a door-to-door salesman, Abbott said “the opinion speaks for itself.”

State Sen. and Democratic nominee for lieutenant governor Leticia Van de Putte at the Democratic state convention on June 27, 2014.
State Sen. and Democratic nominee for lieutenant governor Leticia Van de Putte at the Democratic state convention on June 27, 2014.

Van de Putte Calls for Reducing High-Stakes Testing

Leticia Van de Putte, the Democratic candidate for lieutenant governor, calls for reducing high-stakes testing in a new plan for Texas schools. The campaign of her Republican opponent, Dan Patrick, said the plan would do nothing to help turn around underperforming schools.

Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst gives his concession speech after loosing his reelection bid to Sen. Dan Patrick on May 27th, 2014
Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst gives his concession speech after loosing his reelection bid to Sen. Dan Patrick on May 27th, 2014

Analysis: Shuffling the Senate Decks, a Little Early

Lame-duck Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst had to make a few committee assignments to replace members who resigned. But he didn't stop there. He also replaced members who will be leaving in January, setting up some vexing choices for his yet-to-be-elected successor.

Paul Beckham and Gary Giffen leave Zilker Elementary School in Austin after casting ballots for the primary election on March 4.
Paul Beckham and Gary Giffen leave Zilker Elementary School in Austin after casting ballots for the primary election on March 4.

Media Consortium Plans More Exit Polling in Texas

Two years after national polling consortium opted to scale back its survey of Texas voters, the group plans to increase its exit polling in the state during this year's November elections. It's good news for academic researchers, who say the data helps them study shifts in Texas politics.

Texas Attorney General and Republican gubernatorial candidate Greg Abbott speaks to supporters at Lavazza Espression on Congress Avenue in Austin.
Texas Attorney General and Republican gubernatorial candidate Greg Abbott speaks to supporters at Lavazza Espression on Congress Avenue in Austin.

Farmers Insurance PAC Gives to Abbott Amid Lawsuit

Critics of Attorney General Greg Abbott say the state's top lawyer has not fairly represented Texas homeowners who were charged too much by an insurance company whose employees' PAC has given generously to his campaign. Abbott, his campaign and Farmers Insurance contend a proposed settlement agreement is fair.

Democratic state Sen. Leticia Van de Putte and Republican state Sen. Dan Patrick, who are facing off in a fiery race to become the state's next lieutenant governor, address delegates at their respective party's state conventions in June.
Democratic state Sen. Leticia Van de Putte and Republican state Sen. Dan Patrick, who are facing off in a fiery race to become the state's next lieutenant governor, address delegates at their respective party's state conventions in June.

Patrick, Van de Putte Hone Their Immigration Messages

As the recent surge of Central Americans entering the country illegally through Texas’ border with Mexico has drawn national attention, it has also become a major talking point for the 2014 candidates for lieutenant governor. Political observers see advantages for each candidate in the debate.