The Texan’s War Room is a comprehensive look at the latest on the most pivotal campaigns of the 2022 elections in the Lone Star State.

Notes: Asterisk (*) on campaign finance tables indicates incumbent. All filings for state races are from the period covering 1/1/2021-6/30/2021. A moratorium during the regular state legislative session prohibited current, non-judicial officeholders from campaign fundraising until June 21, 2021.

State Races

Governor

Current: Greg Abbott

Background

In the 2022 midterm elections, the top race on ballots in Texas will be for governor. The current head of the executive branch in the Lone Star State is Gov. Greg Abbott, who is seeking reelection for his third term. He handily won the Republican primaries in 2014 and 2018 with over 90 percent of the vote each time and won the general elections with 59 percent and 56 percent during those years, respectively.

This year, though, Abbott is facing several challengers within his own party who are more well funded and have broader name recognition than his previous GOP opponents. Conservative humorist Chad Prather was the first well known challenger to join the primary, followed by former state Sen. Don Huffines. And in July, former Florida Congressman Allen West resigned from his position as the chairman of the Republican Party of Texas in order to join the gubernatorial race as well.

Fundraising

Candidate Cash-on-Hand Expenditures Contributions Outstanding Loans
Greg Abbott (R)* $55,597,842.45 $3,174,269.21 $18,715,675.59 $0.00
Don Huffines (R) $7,588,567.13 $1,386,025.93 $4,123,107.73 $5,000,000.00
Chad Prather (R) $25,947.48 $22,732.77 $48,897.00 $0.00
Paul Belew (R) $1,100.00 $0.00 $1,100.00 $5,000.00
Delilah Barrios (G) $1,018.50 $0.00 $1,118.50 $0.00
Deirdre Gilbert (D) $617.56 $5,456.37 $5,077.00 $0.00
Michael Cooper (D) $75.00 $740.89 $75.00 $0.00
Patrick Wynne (Reform) $63.10 $101.48 $120.00 $20.00
Danny Harrison (R) $0.00 $397.76 $0.00 $0.00
Larry Baggett $0.00 $221.96 $0.00 $0.00
Yomi Hardison N/A N/A N/A N/A
Andrew Jewell (L) N/A N/A N/A N/A
Kurt Schwab (R) N/A N/A N/A N/A
Allen West (R) N/A N/A N/A N/A

Notes: Campaign finance numbers for Gov. Abbott are taken from his candidate/office-holder account and his Texans for Greg Abbott SPAC.

Coverage

Polling

  • June 22-29, 2021: UT Tyler (1,090 registered voters; +/-3.0% margin of error)
    • (440 GOP Primary Voters): 77% for Abbott; 12% for Huffines; 11% for someone else
    • (477 GOP Primary Voters): 52% for Abbott; 22% for “someone more like Donald Trump”; 13% for “a more conservative Republican”; 12% for “a more centrist Republican”
    • (Total Voters): 46% for Abbott; 22% for Huffines; 32% for someone else
    • (Total Voters): 39% for Abbott; 38% for Matthew McConaughey; 23% for someone else
    • (Total Voters): 45% for Abbott; 33% for O’Rourke; 22% for someone else
  • April 6-13, 2021: UT Tyler (1,126 registered voters; +/-2.9% margin of error)
    • (508 GOP Primary Voters): 47% for Abbott; 20% for “a more centrist Republican”; 18% for “someone more like Donald Trump”; 14% for “a more conservative Republican”
    • (Total Voters): 45% for Matthew McConaughey; 33% for Abbott 22% for someone else

Last updated: July 16, 2021

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Lieutenant Governor

Current: Dan Patrick

Background

Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick is seeking his third term as the state’s second-ranking executive and the presiding officer of the Texas Senate. Patrick has held the role since he ousted former Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst in the 2014 Republican primary runoff with 65 percent of the vote. He won the general election with 58 percent of the vote in 2014 and then again in 2018 with 51.3 percent of the vote against the Democratic nominee, Mike Collier, who received 46.49 percent.

Collier is now challenging Patrick again for the position, hoping that the scales tip toward Democrats’ favor even more than in their 2018 successes.

Fundraising

Candidate Cash-on-Hand Expenditures Contributions Outstanding Loans
Dan Patrick (R)* $23,621,531.00 $827,206.29 $5,025,855.00 $0.00
Mike Collier (D) $202,595.34 $508,849.70 $757,109.87 $450,500.00
Todd Bullis $0.00 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00

Note: Campaign finance numbers for Lt. Gov. Patrick are taken from his COH account and his Texans for Dan Patrick SPAC.

Coverage

Last updated: July 16, 2021

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Attorney General

Current: Ken Paxton

Background

Among the most heated primary races in Texas is the GOP race for the Office of the Attorney General (OAG). Current Attorney General Ken Paxton is seeking reelection, but after several of his senior aides accused him of abuse of office and eventually filed a whistleblower lawsuit after being fired, other Republicans who have also been elected to a statewide position see an opportunity to climb the political ladder.

George P. Bush, the current land commissioner for the state, announced his campaign in early June, and later that month Eva Guzman resigned from her position on the Texas Supreme Court in order to launch her campaign for the OAG. The latest Republican entry into the race is Rep. Matt Krause (R-Fort Worth), a member of the conservative Texas Freedom Caucus, who announced in mid-September.

Democrats so far have two formal candidates in the race, former Galveston mayor Joe Jaworski and Lee Merritt, an attorney known for representing families of individuals killed by police officers.

Fundraising

Candidate Cash-on-Hand Expenditures Contributions Outstanding Loans
Ken Paxton (R)* $6,839,399.65 $264,065.35 $1,819,468.91 $125,000.00
George P. Bush (R) $2,699,586.58 $883,852.43 $2,264,137.95 $0.00
Eva Guzman (R) $610,756.16 $43,202.30 $1,051,723.00 $0.00
Joe Jaworski (D) $525,342.19 $207,563.95 $452,210.38 $0.00
Matt Krause (R) $101,785.03 $57,254.51 $29,700.00 $0.00
Lee Merritt $75,485.00 $24,500.00 $100,000.00 $0.00

Coverage

Polling

  • June 22-29, 2021: UT Tyler (1,090 registered voters; 337 GOP primary voters +/-3.0% margin of error)
    • Paxton: 42%
    • Bush: 34%
    • Guzman: 4%
    • Someone else: 12%
    • I don’t know: 8%

Last updated: July 16, 2021

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Agriculture Commissioner

Current: Sid Miller

Background

While the current Agriculture Commissioner, Sid Miller, mulled the idea of running for a higher office, he ultimately decided to seek reelection to his current position in 2022. But that reelection won’t come without any opposition in the Republican primary. Most notably so far, state Rep. James White (R-Hillister) announced that this is his last term in the House but is running for the statewide position.

Fundraising

Candidate Cash-on-Hand Expenditures Contributions Outstanding Loans
Sid Miller (R)* $107,967.40 $110,228.00 $71,695.00 $0.00
James White (R) $63,145.72 $15,811.25 $7,906.23 $0.00
Carey Counsil (R) $200.00 $2,223.79 $200.00 $0.00
Ismael Reyes (D) $0.00 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00

Coverage

Last updated: July 16, 2021

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Land Commissioner

Current: George P. Bush

Background

With the current head of the General Land Office (GLO), George P. Bush, running on the ballot for attorney general instead of reelection, the position will be open for another person to fill.

The highest-profile candidate to launch a campaign is current state Sen. Dawn Buckingham (R-Lakeway). Jon Spiers, who unsuccessfully ran for Texas’ 2nd Congressional District when it was open in 2018, is also in the race as a Republican, as is Weston Martinez, a former Texas real estate commissioner appointed under Gov. Rick Perry.

Fundraising

Candidate Cash-on-Hand Expenditures Contributions Outstanding Loans
Dawn Buckingham (R) $1,631,616.28 $155,187.34 $587,780.00 $0.00
Jon Spiers (R) $119,605.90 $21,312.10 $18,755.00 $115,000.00
Ben Armenta (R) $25,000.00 $0.00 $0.00 $25,000.00
Weston Martinez (R) $1,140.00 $8,500.00 $1,140.00 $100,000.00
Lesli Fitzpatrick (R) $506.57 $1,805.42 $50.00 $2,000.00

Coverage

Last updated: July 16, 2021

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Open Seat Tracker

2022 is set to be a major election year in Texas, as all state House, state Senate, and U.S. House seats will be on the ballot, as will most of the statewide elected officials — governor, lieutenant governor, attorney general, comptroller, land commissioner, agriculture commissioner, and one of the three railroad commissioner positions.

With the many positions on the ballot and map lines to be redrawn through redistricting, a great deal of shuffling is expected to take place. Here is a list of seats that will be open as the incumbents have officially announced their retirement or are running for a different position.

Open State House Districts

  • HD 09: Rep. Chris Paddie (R-Marshall) announced his retirement
  • HD 13: Rep. Ben Leman (R-Anderson) announced his retirement
  • HD 19: Rep. James White (R-Hillister) is running for agriculture commissioner
  • HD 50: Rep. Celia Israel (D-Austin) announced her retirement and is exploring a run for Austin mayor
  • HD 63: Rep. Tan Parker (R-Flower Mound) is running for Senate District 12
  • HD 65: Rep. Michelle Beckley (D-Carrollton) is running for U.S. House District 24
  • HD 70: Rep. Scott Sanford (R-McKinney) announced his retirement
  • HD 93: Rep. Matt Krause (R-Fort Worth) is running for attorney general
  • HD 114: Rep. John Turner (D-Dallas) announced his retirement

Open State Senate Districts

  • SD 12: Sen. Jane Nelson (R-Flower Mound) announced her retirement
  • SD 24: Sen. Dawn Buckingham (R-Lakeway) is running for land commissioner

Open Congressional Districts

  • TX-08: Rep. Kevin Brady (R) announced his retirement
  • TX-34: Rep. Filemon Vela (D) announced his retirement
  • TX-37: New congressional district
  • TX-38: New congressional district

Open Statewide Positions

  • General Land Office: Commissioner George P. Bush is running for attorney general

Last updated: September 7, 2021

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