87th LegislatureElections 2020David Spiller Wins Special Runoff Election for North Texas House District

David Spiller won the special runoff election for the North Texas House district with over 60 percent of the vote.
February 23, 2021
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Jack County attorney David Spiller won the special runoff election for House District (HD) 68 Tuesday night, solidifying his place in the state legislature for the remainder of the two-year term.

Spiller won against Nocona Old Boot Factory owner Craig Carter with over 60 percent of the vote.

Once sworn in, Spiller will participate in the remainder of the 87th Legislative Session, which to this point has primarily consisted of filing bills.

After the 60-day mark, lawmakers may begin to take more action in enacting legislation.

In January’s five-person race, Spiller received 44 percent of the vote — a clear lead ahead of the other candidates who all received below 20 percent, but too far shy of the 50 percent needed to avoid a runoff.

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The battle for the runner-up position was more narrow, with Carter edging out Jacksboro financial planner John Berry and former Cooke County Judge Jason Brinkley.

Spiller had been endorsed by former Governor Rick Perry before the special election in January, but during the runoff campaign, he received additional support from several state lawmakers who each contributed $1,000: Reps. Cody Harris (R-Palestine), Ben Leman (R-Anderson), and Chris Paddie (R-Marshall).

In his campaign finance filing eight days before the runoff election, Spiller reported a total of $137,000 raised, $113,000 spent, and $62,000 cash-on-hand, while Carter reported $49,000 spent, $41,000 cash-on-hand, and no new funds raised.

But Carter’s campaign was complicated at the end of January when a car crash killed his mother-in-law and four-year-old daughter and put his young son in critical condition, though he has been steadily recovering. Despite the accident, Carter remained committed to following through with the campaign he had begun.

Spiller’s election brings an end to a line of lawmakers shuffling to different offices, which was first triggered by former Congressman John Ratcliffe’s nomination and confirmation to be the Director of National Intelligence under Trump.

Then-state Sen. Pat Fallon (R-Prosper) was selected by GOP activists to replace Ratcliffe on the ballot for the solidly Republican congressional district, which in turn led to a special election for Fallon’s senate seat that was won by then-state Rep. Drew Springer (R-Muenster).

Spiller will now take Springer’s old seat in the Texas House of Representatives.

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Daniel Friend

Daniel Friend is a reporter for The Texan. He participated in a Great Books program at Azusa Pacific University and graduated in 2019 with a degree in Political Science. He has studied C.S. Lewis’s science fiction trilogy and in his spare time you might find him writing his own novel partly inspired by the series.