Updated, 5/10/14 at 10:14 p.m.:
With all of the precincts counted, Creighton and Toth finished first and second and appear headed for a runoff in the contest to succeed Tommy Williams in the Texas Senate. The numbers never changed much from beginning of counting to the end: Creighton finished with 45.2 percent of the vote, Toth with 23.7 percent, Bunch with 21.8 percent, and Galloway with 9.3 percent.
Updated, 5/10/14 at 8:40 p.m.:
With about half of the precincts counted, Creighton had 46.6 percent, Toth had 22.4 percent, Bunch had 21.6 percent and Galloway had 9.4 percent.
Updated, 5/10/14 at 7:12 p.m.:
In early returns, Brandon Creighton held a wide lead but was short of the 50 percent needed to win without a runoff. Second place was up for grabs, with Steve Toth at 23.1 percent and Gordy Bunch a couple of hundred votes behind, at 21.8 percent. Michael Galloway had 9.2 percent. The caveat: Many votes remain to be counted.
Voters will decide among four Republican candidates Saturday in a special election to replace state Sen. Tommy Williams, and the race could go to a runoff this summer if no candidate collects more than 50 percent of the vote.
Williams, R-The Woodlands, resigned last year from the Senate, where he was chairman of the budget-writing Finance Committee, to take a job as vice chancellor of federal and state relations at the Texas A&M University System.
Senate District 4 includes Chambers and Jefferson counties as well as parts of Galveston, Harris, and Montgomery counties. The candidates are:
• Gordy Bunch, a businessman who serves on The Woodlands Township board of directors
• State Rep. Brandon Creighton of Conroe
• Former state Sen. Michael Galloway of Magnolia
• State Rep. Steve Toth of The Woodlands
Polls close at 7 p.m.