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Campaign Chatter

Rep. Charles Schwertner, R-Georgetown, will run for Steve Ogden's Senate seat. Ogden isn't running, and Williamson County has become the 300-pound gorilla of that district in terms of population. Rep. Larry Gonzales, R-Round Rock, won't run.

State Sen. Steve Ogden (r) chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, visits in the House chamber with State Rep. Charles Sch…

Rep. Charles Schwertner, R-Georgetown, will run for Steve Ogden's Senate seat. Ogden isn't running, and Williamson County has become the 300-pound gorilla of that district in terms of population. Rep. Larry Gonzales, R-Round Rock, won't run, in part because of the travel distances and time and the kids he's got at home, he says.

Former fighter pilot Scott O'Grady pounced first in the race to success Florence Shapiro, R-Plano. Next came Rep. Ken Paxton, R-McKinney, who starts with a long list of supporters and with $711,737 in his political accounts at mid-year. That list of supporters has more than 850 names on it.

Marsha Farney, a Georgetown Republican who is now on the State Board of Education, will run for the HD-20 seat Schwertner is giving up. She's been in office for less than a year, having won her seat in the November 2010 election.

Jay Old, a Republican attorney from Beaumont, will run for Ron Paul's congressional seat next year. State Rep. Randy Weber, R-Pearland, is in that CD-14 race, too.

Pearland Mayor Ed Thompson is slip-streaming Weber, saying he'll run for the HD-29 district Weber now represents. He officiates football games, which might be an interesting talent in the House, if he makes it.

Sugar Land businessman Lee Duggan III announced he'll run in an open HD-85, a district that includes all of Wharton and Jackson counties and part of Fort Bend County. That's a familiar name: Lee Duggan Jr., his dad, was Sugar Land's mayor for nine years.

In the next district over, Sugar Land City Council member Tom Abraham says he'll run for Rep. Charlie Howard's HD-26 seat, and says he's starting with $170,000 already in his campaign account. He's the third candidate in that race; when Howard was announcing his plans not to come back, he predicted there will be at least four Republicans in the race.

Giovanni Capriglione will take another run at Rep. Vicki Truitt, R-Keller. She beat him and two other candidates, without a runoff, in the March 2010 primary election.

Former Rep. Corbin Van Arsdale says he won't run for a Williamson County House seat after all. Van Arsdale served as a Tomball Republican, lost to Allen Fletcher, and moved to the Austin area. He planned to run for the House in an open HD-149 seat and said he was opening the race with $100,000 already raised. But Cedar Park City Councilman Tony Dale decided to get into the race, prompting Van Arsdale to get out.

Larry Taylor claims endorsements from 14 mayors in SD-11. The Friendswood Republican is running for Mike Jackson's Senate seat. His list of mayors: La Porte Mayor Louis Rigby, Pasadena Mayor Johnny Isbell, Deer Park Mayor Wayne Riddle, Pearland Mayor Tom Reid, Friendswood Mayor David Smith, Santa Fe Mayor Ralph Stenzel, Hitchcock Mayor Anthony Matranga, Clear Lake Shores Mayor Vern Johnson, El Lago Mayor Brad Emel, Webster Mayor Floyd Myers, League City Mayor Tim Paulissen, Dickinson Mayor Julie Masters, Tiki Island Mayor Ted Kennedy and Jamaica Beach Mayor Victor Pierson. He's also claiming five fellow Republican state representatives in his fan club, all of whom have districts that overlap the Senate district: Dennis Bonnen of Angleton, Ken Legler of Pasadena, Randy Weber of Pearland, Wayne Smith of Baytown, and John Davis of Clear Lake.

Bennett Ratliff picked up an endorsement from Dallas County Commissioner Maureen Dickey. Rep. Jim Jackson, R-Carrollton, (himself former county commissioner) isn't seeking another term and Ratliff is running for that HD-115 spot.

Running for reelection: Rep. Jason Issac, R-Dripping Springs, in HD-45; Sen. John Carona, R-Dallas, in SD-16; Rep. Drew Darby, R-San Angelo, in HD-72; Rep. Jim Murphy, R-Houston, in HD-133; Rep. Ken Legler, R-Pasadena, in HD-144; Rep. Donna Howard, D-Austin, in HD-48; Rep. Doug Miller, R-New Braunfels, in HD-73; and Allan Ritter, R-Nederland, in HD-21.

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