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Who Are the Biggest Spenders in Texas Races?

Political organizations have contributed more than $26 million to state races in Texas since Jan. 1, 2015. Take a look at the biggest-spending political groups and which types of candidates they support most.

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*Correction appended.

Ahead of Tuesday's primary, political organizations have contributed more than $26 million to Texas legislative and State Board of Education campaigns since Jan. 1, 2015.

Empower Texans and Texans for Lawsuit Reform have given the most money this election cycle. Empower Texans, a political action group that backs Tea Party candidates such as state Reps. Bryan Hughes, R-Mineola, and Jonathan Stickland, R-Bedford, donated large amounts to a smaller number of candidates, doling out $1.5 million to 40 candidates, all Republicans, since Jan. 1, 2015. Texans for Lawsuit Reform also contributed $1.3 million, but spread their money among 100 candidates.

The top of the list of political group contributors also includes a mix of professional associations, such as the Texas Association of Realtors PAC ($1.2 million) and Texas Medical Association PAC ($546,000), lobbying groups such as Blackridge ($455,000) and issue-driven groups such as the Constituents Focus PAC ($599,000) and the Texans for Education Reform PAC ($1.3 million).

Below is a breakdown of political group contributions reported between Jan. 1, 2015 and Feb. 22, 2016, by candidates vying for the Texas House, Texas Senate and State Board of Education. Keep in mind, campaign finance data is notoriously messy — most of it is hand-entered and campaigns may abbreviation organization names in different ways. We've done our best to clean up the data and tally the totals.


Correction: An earlier version of this story included inaccurate spending totals.

Disclosure: Texas Association of Realtors, Blackridge, Texas Medical Association, Texas Trial Lawyers Association, USAA, Texas Land Title Association, Hillco Partners, AT&T, Texas Dental Association, Texas Farm Bureau and Texas Automobile Dealers Association are corporate sponsors of The Texas Tribune. Previously, Texans for Education Reform, Wholesale Beer Distributors of Texas, Independent Insurance Agents of Texas and Independent Bankers Association of Texas were corporate sponsors of the Tribune. A complete list of Tribune donors and sponsors can be viewed here.

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Politics 2016 elections