Battleground 2020Elections 2020State HouseState SenateBattleground 2020: Texas State Races Take Shape as Filing Deadline Closes

The filing deadline to run for primary ballots closed last night. Here's where all of the key Texas state battleground races stand.
and December 10, 2019

Visit the War Room

Yesterday was the last day that any candidate looking to run for state elected office in Texas could file. Here’s a look at how some of the races for the most contentious battleground districts shaped up.

Senate District 19

The only Texas Senate battleground race in 2020 is the one that preserved Republican’s veto-proof majority.

In 2018, after his second try, Pete Flores (R-Pleasanton) won this border district by roughly 6,000 votes after his predecessor — Carlos Uresti — was indicted on federal money laundering and fraud charges and resigned.

A bevy of Democrats look to flip back the district which turned red for the first time since Reconstruction. The Democratic primary will showcase HD 119 representative Roland Gutierrez, Bexar County prosecutor Freddy Ramirez, attorney Xochil Peña Rodriguez, and Belinda Shvetz.

The Texan Tumbler

House District 45

After flipping this Blanco and Hays County district in 2018, Rep. Erin Zwiener (D-Driftwood) will face one primary opponent in Liliana Posada and several Republican opponents, including Carrie Isaac, Austin Talley, and Bud Wymore.

House District 47

Freshman Rep. Vikki Goodwin (D-Austin) unseated incumbent Paul Workman in 2018. In 2020, she’ll face the winner of a crowded Republican primary.

Candidates in the GOP primary consist of former Marine Aaron Reitz, former Austin police officer Justin Berry, attorney Jennifer Fleck, former Austin City Councilman Don Zimmerman, and attorney Jenny Roan Forgey.

House District 52 

Rep. James Talarico (D-Round Rock), the youngest member of the Texas House, drew one Republican opponent. Lucio Valdez, an Army veteran of 33-years, and Talarico, a former public school teacher, will face off in the general election.

House District 65 

Rep. Michelle Beckley (D-Carrollton) beat former Rep. Ron Simmons last cycle, and Simmons has already endorsed one of her general opponents this time around.

Nancy Cline, a civil engineer, and Kronda Thimesch, endorsed by Simmons, will vie for the Republican nomination, while Iraq War veteran Paige Dixon will challenge Beckley in the Democratic primary.

House District 92 

Rep. Jonathan Stickland won reelection with less than 50 percent of the vote in 2018, and though the conservative staple will not run for reelection, the race has attracted multiple candidates of both parties. 

Former Bedford city councilman Jeff Cason, restaurant owner Taylor Gillig, and Bedford Mayor Jim Griffin have all filed as Republicans. Steve Riddell, who ran against Stickland last cycle, and attorney Jeff Whitfield will run against each other in the Democrat primary.

House District 102

Another district that flipped from red to blue in 2018 was HD 102 in Dallas County. Ana-Maria Ramos (D-Richardson) beat incumbent Linda Koop by little more than 3,000 votes.

In the general, Ramos will face either newcomer Rick Walker or Linda Koop — who hopes to regain her old seat. 

House District 105

Incumbent Rep. Terry Meza (D-Irving) looks to build upon her 4,000-vote victory in 2018. Meza knocked off incumbent Rodney Anderson after her second try. 

Meza will face off against Republican Gerson Hernandez in the general.

House District 108

Two-term incumbent Morgan Meyer (R-Dallas) squeaked through in 2018 by 220 votes in his Highland Park district. 

In the general, he will face the winner between his 2018 opponent Joanna Cattanach, geologist and Democratic activist Tom Ervin, and businessman Shawn Terry.

House District 112

This battleground race features a rematch of the 2018 race between six-time incumbent Rep. Angie Chen Button (R-Garland) and Dallas attorney Brandy Chambers. Button won her Garland-centric district narrowly in 2018 by just over 1,000 votes. 

House District 113

Rep. Rhetta Bowers (D-Rowlett) looks to keep the east Dallas County seat she first won in 2018. She will face a young Republican challenger in pharmacist and business owner Will Douglas. Bowers flipped the seat in 2018 after losing by 6,000 votes in 2016.

House District 114

Rep. John Turner (D-Dallas) — son of former U.S. Rep. Jim Turner — hopes to hang onto the north Dallas seat he flipped in 2018 after then-incumbent Jason Villalba was defeated in the Republican primary.

He’ll face Republican challenger Luisa Del Rosal in the general. 

House District 115

Rep. Julie Johnson (D-Carrolton), who made waves in the 86th Legislature for temporarily killing the House’s “Save Chick-fil-A” bill, handily won this northwest Dallas County district in 2018. 

With former Rep. Matt Rinaldi (whom Johnson defeated) not running, Johnson will face Republican challenger and former school principal Karyn Brownlee.

House District 132

In 2018, Rep. Gina Calanni (D-Katy) narrowly edged out incumbent Republican Mike Schofield by fewer than 120 votes in this west Harris County seat. 

Next year, she’ll face the winner of the Republican primary between Mike Schofield — who’s looking to regain his lost seat — and Angelica Garcia. Garcia received an endorsement from Governor Greg Abbott over the former representative, Schofield.

House District 135 

Freshman Rep. Jon Rosenthal (D-Houston) flipped HD 135 in 2018 by defeating longtime incumbent Republican Gary Elkins in this northwest Harris County district. He won by 1,700 votes. 

Rosenthal will face Republican Jersey City mayor Justin Ray in the general. Neither have any primary opponents.

House District 136

Incumbent Rep. John Bucy (D-Austin) is running for his second term in 2020 to represent Leander and Cedar Park. He knocked off incumbent Republican Tony Dale in 2018 by 7,500 votes.

Bucy will face attorney and Cedar Park councilor Mike Guevara in the general.


Disclosure: Unlike almost every other media outlet, The Texan is not beholden to any special interests, does not apply for any type of state or federal funding, and relies exclusively on its readers for financial support. If you’d like to become one of the people we’re financially accountable to, click here to subscribe.

Get “KB's Hot Take”

A free bi-weekly commentary on current events by Konni Burton.

Brad Johnson

Brad Johnson is a senior reporter for The Texan and an Ohio native who graduated from the University of Cincinnati in 2017. He is an avid sports fan who most enjoys watching his favorite teams continue their title drought throughout his cognizant lifetime. In his free time, you may find Brad quoting Monty Python productions and trying to calculate the airspeed velocity of an unladen swallow.