Liveblog: 2014 Primary Runoff Elections
The 2014 primary election season ends with Tuesday's runoffs. Stay tuned to this liveblog, as we'll update it throughout the night with results and election news.
The long 2014 primary election season ends with Tuesday's runoffs.
At the top of the Republican ballot are four unusually loud statewide races, including the lieutenant governor and attorney general contests. On the Democratic ballot, voters have fewer decisions to make, with statewide runoffs for the U.S. Senate and Texas agriculture commissioner and a couple of legislative contests around Texas.
Check out our election scoreboard for real-time results. And see our election brackets to get an overview of the whole 2014 Texas election cycle and to see who will face off against whom in November's general election.
Throughout the evening, we'll be updating this liveblog with results and other election news. We'll also livestream reactions from candidates after the election results come in.
Early voting numbers show a big lead for Tea Party favorite Ken Paxton, who leads Dan Branch in the attorney general contest by a margin of 61 percent to 39 percent.
Early voting figures show Tea Party activist Konni Burton leading former state Rep. Mark Shelton by more than 20 points in SD-10.
Early voting numbers for HD-105 show Democrat Susan Motley 40 percentage points ahead of her opponent, Terry Meza. Republican Will Metcalf is 28 points ahead of Ted Seago in HD-16, and in HD-66, Republican Matt Shaheen is 8 points ahead of Glenn Callison.
In the Republican race for railroad commissioner, (very) early returns show Ryan Sitton up big over Wayne Christian. Sitton, an oil and gas engineer, leads Christian, a former state representative, by a margin of 58 percent to 41 percent. That's with about 160,000 votes tallied.
Sen. Dan Patrick showing huge lead over incumbent Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst in early voting totals, by 20,000. Dewhurst leading only in Travis and Nueces counties.
Initial numbers in the CD-4 contest are pointing to a possible barn burner between Ralph Hall and John Ratcliffe, with the challenger ahead by 215 votes. First returns are heavily from Grayson and Hunt counties.
More early votes push Sen. Dan Patrick up more than 60,000 over incumbent Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst.
Sid Miller is up 13 percentage points over Tommy Merritt in the Republican race for agriculture commissioner, according to early voting numbers.
Early voting figures in SD-2 show incumbent Bob Deuell 2 percentage points behind Tea Party candidate Bob Hall.
In HD-58, Republican DeWayne Burns is nearly 7 percentage points ahead of Philip Eby, with a margin of 305 votes.
Early numbers show former CIA agent and San Antonio native Will Hurd with a double-digit lead over former U.S. Rep. Francisco “Quico” Canseco in the GOP runoff for CD-23.
Hurd currently leads by about 15 percentage points, or 880 votes. The winner will face Democrat Pete Gallego, D-Alpine. Hurd lost the 2010 runoff to Canseco, who went on to oust Democrat Ciro Rodriguez but lost a close race two years later to Gallego, a former state representative.
In other congressional runoffs of note, Will Hurd leads Francisco "Quico" Canseco by 15 points in CD-23 and Brian Babin leads Ben Streusand by a commanding 69-31 margin in CD-36. The CD-23 contest is to pick a challenger to Democratic incumbent Pete Gallego while the CD-36 race is to pick a successor to Steve Stockman.
In HD-10, Waxahachie attorney John Wray is leading Tea Party favorite T.J. Fabby by 10 percentage points in the race to replace longtime state Rep. Jim Pitts.
Jim Hogan, the no-name to known-name Cleburne farmer and insurance salesman, is leading musician Richard "Kinky" Friedman by 11 percentage points. That's with about 86,000 votes counted. Might the candidates' names be a factor?
Early votes continue to put distance between Dan Patrick and David Dewhurst. Patrick is now more than 100,000 votes ahead of the incumbent, Dewhurst.
If you've been following the Tribune's coverage, you might recall that candidates for agriculture commissioner – in both parties – haven't talked all that much about agriculture.
State Sen. and Tea Party favorite Ken Paxton, R-McKinney, is celebrating a substantial early lead — 63 percent to 37 — over state Rep. Dan Branch, R-Dallas. Per Paxton spokesman Anthony Holm: "We are incredibly encouraged by these early returns and grateful to the voters. If this trend continues, I will be honored to serve as the Republican nominee for Texas Attorney General and build on General Greg Abbott's legacy of accomplishment."
In HD-53, Andy Murr, former Kimble County judge, is leading attorney Rob Henneke by 24 percentage points to fill the seat being vacated by state Rep. Harvey Hilderbran.
Early figures show HD-132 Republican candidate Mike Schofield is 42 percentage points ahead of Ann Hodge, with a margin of 1,356 votes.
After reversing a decision to run for railroad commissioner last year, incumbent Stefani Carter is trailing 21 percentage points behind Linda Koop, former Dallas city councilwoman, in HD-102.
A surprise brewing in the Republican race for railroad commissioner: Sitton is leading Christian by 20 percentage points. Sitton outspent Christian by far, but Christian, backed by Tea Party groups, led the four-way March race by 12 points.
In HD-108, attorney Morgan Meyer is showing a huge lead over Chart Westcott, a private equity firm partner, by a margin of 45 percentage points.
Miller leads Merritt by more than 9 points in the Republican runoff for agriculture commissioner. The difference is about 34,000 votes.
Incumbent Patricia Hardy is leading Eric Mahroum by 13 percentage points in the Republican runoff for SBOE District 11.
Early votes show HD-129 Republican candidate Dennis Paul, a business owner, is leading local Rotary president Sheryl Berg by 8 percentage points.
In the Democratic runoff for SBOE District 13, Erika Beltran is showing a big lead ahead of Andrea Hilburn with a margin of 32 percentage points.
Hogan leads Friedman 55 percent to 44 percent in the Democratic race for agriculture commissioner.
The Texas Tribune has called the Republican race for railroad commissioner for Ryan Sitton. The oil and gas engineer led Wayne Christian, the former state lawmaker, by 20 percentage points with 8 percent of precincts reporting.
Sitton will face Democrat Steve Brown in the general election. It's been two decades since a Democrat sat on the Railroad Commission.
In HD-76, unofficial early voting results show César Blanco leading former state Rep. Norma Chávez by 34 percentage points.
Jim Hogan, if you recall, refused to openly campaign or to accept endorsements in his bid for agriculture commissioner. "If you will pause for a moment and Google 'Jim Hogan Texas Agriculture Commissioner,' I believe you will be amazed at the amount of information available about me," he recently wrote for TribTalk.
Just got off the phone with Jim Hogan. Asked for his reaction to his win, he said: “It’s, what do you call it, a relief, or joy or whatever.” Hogan wasn't watching the returns, but some of his family members were. He said his Aunt in Lubbock had called to tell him he was up big, and the Wall Street Journal later called to tell him he won.
Hogan: “A lot of people were excited about this, whether neighbors, friends or whatever...I left all this up to God’s hands.”
In SD-2, Bob Hall now has a 4 percentage point lead over incumbent Bob Deuell with a margin of 691 votes.
“They say I don’t campaign, but apparently, I did,” Hogan said. “Almost everybody wrote something about me.” Hogan said more candidates should run campaigns like his. “You don’t raise any money, you leave it to the people, God and everybody else," he said. “It didn’t cost anything. I go on with my life.”
Ratcliffe has been slowly widening his lead over Hall in CD-4. More than a quarter of the precincts are now reporting and Ratcliffe holds a 724-vote lead over Hall.
Of Sid Miller, who is leading by 9 percentage points in the GOP race for agriculture commissioner, Hogan, who gets the Democratic nod, said: “We’re not the best friends, but we know each other." He says the race will be cordial – at least on his end.
In HD-58, Republican DeWayne Burns, a business manager, is now more than 9 percentage points ahead of construction company owner Philip Eby with 5,614 votes tallied.
On his victory over Wayne Christian in the GOP race for railroad commissioner, Ryan Sitton said his campaign has "a lot of work to do between now and the general election and I'm committed to working as hard as ever to earn every Texans' vote."
"After all, it is important that every Texan is confident and proud of our energy industry and the Railroad Commission must be out in front representing you every day in a responsible way," he said.
Texas Democratic Party congratulates David Alameel on win in U.S. Senate primary over Kesha Rogers. "Dr. David Alameel is the story of America," says Executive Director Will Hailer.
We are calling the Republican race for Montgomery County's HD-16 for Will Metcalf, son of former Conroe mayor Tommy Metcalf, over Ted Seago, a pastor.
Mark Miller, the Libertarian candidate for railroad commissioner, tweets that "it's time for serious RRC debates" now that the Republicans have chosen a candidate.
Dewhurst said he called Dan Patrick to congratulate him on a "hard-fought battle." Dewhurst said he told Patrick he pledged to do whatever he could to support him in the Nov. 4 general election.
We're calling the Republican race for Collin County's HD-66 for former county commissioner Matt Shaheen over attorney Glenn Callison.
The Texas Tribune has called the HD-102 Republican runoff for Linda Koop over incumbent Stefani Carter.
We're calling the SD-10 runoff for Tea Party activist Konni Burton over former state Rep. Mark Shelton.
We're calling the HD-53 GOP runoff for former Kimble County judge Andrew Murr over attorney Rob Henneke.
We're calling the CD-4 GOP runoff for former U.S. Attorney John Ratcliffe ending the career of Ralph Hall, Congress' oldest member at 91 years old.
The Texas Tribune has called the Republican race for agriculture commissioner for Sid Miller over Tommy Merritt. Miller led by more than 6 percentage points with 57 percent of precincts reporting. He will face Jim Hogan in the general election.
For Empower Texans, an influential conservative group led by Michael Quinn Sullivan and largely financed by Midland oil man Tim Dunn, tonight's Republican runoff results have been
"This is a fantastic night," Sullivan said.
In statewide races, the group appears poised to go 3-3, as it backed Dan Patrick for Lieutenant Governor, Ken Paxton for attorney general and Sid Miller for agriculture commissioner. Both Patrick and Paxton won their primaries and Miller is currently leading.
Sullivan said he and his staffers were caught off guard by the size of Patrick's and Paxton's victories over their opponents.
The group also made several endorsements in runoff primary races for seats in the Texas House. There, the group has seen more losses than wins. Sullivan said even the candidates they didn't endorse will be improvements over the current office holders who all opted not to run for re-election.
"All of those were pretty much seats that were previously held by folks that were probably best described by moderates, except with the exception of Van Taylor," Sullivan said. "They couldn’t get any worse from our perspective."
The one disappointment, Sullivan said, was state Rep. Stefani Carter's loss over Linda Koop in Dallas. Carter opted to run for re-election after first announcing a run for railroad commissioner.
"That kind of shows that when a Texas Lege member says they’re leaving and than sort of doesn’t, it confuses people a little bit," Sullivan said.
We've called the HD-76 Democratic runoff for newcomer César Blanco over former state Rep. Norma Chávez, who conceded the race after trailing by more than 30 points.
We're also calling the HD-108 Republican runoff for attorney Morgan Meyer, who held onto a huge lead over Chart Westcott.
In the Democratic SBOE District 13 runoff, we're calling it for Erika Beltran, who easily defeated Andrea Hilburn.
Following Tea Party activist Konni Burton's win in the SD-10 GOP runoff, Libby Willis, the Democratic nominee, said she looks forward to facing off with Burton and showing voters the differences in their "approach to representing SD-10."
"Ms. Burton seems more concerned about ideological purity and advancing the Tea Party agenda than doing what is best for the people of SD 10," Willis said in a statement.
We're calling the HD-132 GOP runoff for Mike Schofield, a former adviser to Gov. Rick Perry, over Ann Hodge, the president of the Katy Area Chamber of Commerce.
With 68 percent of precincts reporting, the SD-2 runoff is still too close to call with Bob Hall leading incumbent Bob Deuell by just 105 votes.
We're calling business owner Dennis Paul as the winner of the HD-129 GOP runoff over local Rotary president Sheryl Berg.
We're calling the CD-36 GOP runoff for former Woodville Mayor Brian Babin over Houston mortgage broker Ben Streusand, who had garnered strong Tea Party support. This was the race to replace Steve Stockman, who decided at the last minute to run for U.S. Senate.
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