87th LegislatureElections 2022State HouseRep. Lyle Larson Announces He Will Not Seek Re-Election

The retirement is the seventh of this year while a handful of other incumbents are seeking other office.
October 13, 2021
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A twelfth open seat in the Texas House materialized Wednesday when Rep. Lyle Larson (R-San Antonio) announced he would not seek re-election.

“Many of you know that we are firm believers in the concept of term limits,” Larson said in an email to supporters. “This belief is reflected in our years-long effort to enact term limits in state government.”

“As a strong proponent of term limits, will follow the limits we previously proposed in this legislation.”

Larson has served in the Texas House for a decade, first winning election in 2010. During that time, he became one of the top lieutenants of former Speaker Joe Straus (R-San Antonio) and now finds himself in a staunchly antagonistic role within his own party.

Since Greg Abbott’s election in 2014, Larson has quarreled with the governor publicly, then seemed to mend bridges, and has now rejoined the clash. He’s similarly criticized Lt. Governor Dan Patrick for his actions in the senate.

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Larson spent much of this year conjuring visions of a Texas Independent Party to challenge the current GOP dominance and staking out opposition to the Republican-backed election reform bill. He even urged his former House ally, Straus, to launch an independent challenge to either Abbott or Patrick.

Based on Mark P. Jones’ post-session rankings, Larson was rated the most liberal Republican during the 2021 regular session. He also opposed the legislature’s restriction on Critical Race Theory’s presence in public schools and supported Medicaid expansion; a political third rail for the Texas GOP.

Early Wednesday morning, Larson was one of only two Republicans who voted against the House’s redistricting plan.

Despite his antagonism on certain big-ticket issues, Larson did vote for the Constitutional Carry bill and the Texas Heartbeat Act — though, filing a “rape and incest” exception to the legislation after it already took effect in September.

Larson’s retirement is the seventh by an incumbent this year, while a handful of others are seeking other offices. He won re-election in 2020 by a wide margin, but due to an excess of population, his district is set to be redrawn and shrunk in size. He previously served on the San Antonio City Council and as a Bexar County commissioner before an unsuccessful congressional bid in 2008.

“Team Larson has thoroughly enjoyed communicating with you through this medium for the last decade,” the email stated. “Thank you for your support and confidence over the years. Hope to see you around northern Bexar County.”

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Brad Johnson

Brad Johnson is 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.