Prior to redistricting, House District (HD) 70 included McKinney and other swaths of Collin County. It is currently represented by Rep. Scott Sanford (R-McKinney), who is retiring from the legislature. The Texan’s Texas Partisan Index ranks the district as D-50%, indicating it is a tossup between the two parties.
“In the midst of changing life seasons and a personal evaluation of priorities, I have made the prayerful decision to not file for re-election,” Sanford remarked in a statement announcing his decision last September.
Republicans running for the redrawn district include Eric Bowlin, LaDale Buggs, Daniel Chandler, Jamee Jolly, and Hayden Padgett. The Democrats on the ballot are Cassandra Garcia Hernandez, Mihaela Plesa, and Lorenzo Sanchez.
On Wednesday, the Texas Ethics Commission published campaign finance numbers for the reporting period of January 21 to February 19 of this year.
Bowlin reported $783 in total political contributions, $69,046 in total expenditures, $162,637 in cash on hand, and $292,238 in outstanding loans.
Prior to his current occupation in real estate, Bowlin served in the U.S. Army.
In contrast, Jolly reported $202,524 in campaign contributions and no campaign debt. She also reported $44,777 in expenditures and $38,117 in cash on hand.
Jolly was the president of the Plano Chamber of Commerce and was the Executive Director of Plano ISD’s Education Foundation.
Padgett’s campaign is $10,000 in debt and reported $7,558 in contributions with $6,305 in expenditures and $26,237 in cash on hand.
A native of California, Padgett moved from the Golden State to Texas about five years ago and works in software product management.
Chandler reported $1,000 in contributions and the same amount in cash on hand, with $475 in expenditures and no campaign debt. No report is available for Buggs, who is a real estate agent.
On the Democratic side, Plesa reported $2,300 in contributions, $40,646 in expenditures, $14,731 in cash on hand, and $7,000 in outstanding loans.
Hernandez performed the best in fundraising with $18,290 in contributions and no campaign debt. She also reported $61,399 in expenditures and $21,757 in cash on hand.
Sanchez indicated $9,080 in campaign contributions and $9,000 in outstanding loans. He reported $10,176 in expenditures and $8,771 in cash on hand.
Early voting is underway and lasts until Friday. Primary day is Tuesday, March 1.
A map of the redrawn House District 70 can be found below.
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Hayden Sparks is a senior reporter for The Texan and a lifelong resident of the Lone Star State. He has coached competitive speech and debate and has been involved in politics since a young age. One of Hayden's favorite quotes is by Sam Houston: "Texas has yet to learn submission to any oppression, come from what source it may."