By Camille Cox | Staff Writer
Gov. Greg Abbott and former Rep. Beto O’Rourke won the Republican and Democratic nominations, respectively, for governor.
Texas held the first primary election on March 1, allowing citizens to vote in either the Republican primary or the Democratic primary to choose who they would like to represent the party in the general election in November.
Out of the 50 states, Texas has the first primary. The Republican Party hopes to take the House of Representatives, with all 435 seats up for election and 38 of those coming from Texas.
According to the New York Times, the three largest races in Texas are for governor, with incumbent Abbott running for his third term; TX-15 congressional seat, where the parties are evenly matched within the district; and attorney general, with incumbent Ken Paxton facing three other Republican candidates in the primary and now facing a runoff election as well.
Along with the governor, TX-15 and attorney general races, the races for lieutenant governor and McLennan and Dallas district attorneys are among the largest races in Texas. NPR said that regarding the governor race, former President Donald Trump has endorsed Abbott, leaving him ahead of the polls on the Republican ticket and officially winning the title after results were tallied. On the Democratic ticket, the New York Times reported that former Rep. Beto O’Rourke has won the nomination and will face another incumbent in a statewide election, not long after narrowly losing to Ted Cruz in the senatorial race in 2018.
Houston junior Hannah Bates said she chose to vote early by mail for the primary election. She said she learned from her parents the importance of voting in all elections.
“In high school, my AP Gov teacher always stressed how important it is to vote, and my parents also believed the same thing and have raised me the same way to always vote in every election — no matter how big it is or what it is — because we have the ability to influence what happens in our government and should take advantage of that,” Bates said.
Bates said the ballot was delivered to her house before she mailed it back, and she made sure to date and fill out all the information correctly so that her ballot was counted for the election.
“The process was painless, and I’m lucky to have parents who walked me through the process of requesting that mail-in ballot,” Bates said. “There were a lot of safety steps to make sure it was all accurate, but it maybe took a total of five minutes to request it, fill it out and drop it off at the post office.”
Matthew Brammer, lecturer in the journalism department, said students should either vote here or request a mail-in ballot to ensure their vote counts in their home state.
“I think it’s part of our responsibility to vote, but that also requires that you know a little bit about what’s going on,” Brammer said. “In the journalism department, we have current events quizzes in order to encourage students to become critical consumers of news.”
Follow NPR news for more developments as the elections continue to be called.
Results of Major Elections:
Greg Abbott cinched the Republican nomination for his third run for governor of Texas. Abbott will face Beto O’Rourke, the likely candidate for the Democratic Party who received 91.3% of votes, according to AP as of late March 1.
Republican incumbent Ken Paxton is seeking his third term but will have to go to a rundown election in May after failing to meet the 50% threshold in the primary election. Paxton will face George P. Bush, grandson of former president George H.W. Bush, to determine who will represent the Republican Party in the general election. Democratic candidate Rochelle Garza leads in the primary but has yet to reach the 50% threshold. She will be in the runoff election with another undetermined candidate.
Republican incumbent Dan Patrick secured the Republican nomination, but his Democratic opponent has yet to be called. As of early March 2, Democratic candidate Mike Collier leads among the candidates but has yet to reach the 50% threshold, which will take Collier to the runoff with another undetermined candidate.
US-17 Congressional Seat:
Democratic nominee: Mary Jo Woods
Republican nominee: Pete Sessions
US-15 Congressional Seat:
Democratic nominee: Ruben Ramirez will advance to the runoff after receiving 28.3% of the votes, but his opponent is yet to be determined.
Republican nominee: Monica De La Garza
McLennan County District Attorney:
Democratic nominee: Aubrey Robertson
Republican nominee: Josh Tetens