2022 Primary Election RESULTSElections 2022Rochelle Garza, Joe Jaworski Head to Runoff for Democratic Attorney General Nomination After Contested Primary

After a close race for second place, civil rights attorney Lee Merritt announced he would suspend his campaign and endorse Rochelle Garza.
March 10, 2022
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On the primary election night, most eyes were on the Republican challenges against Attorney General Ken Paxton to see which of the candidates might force Paxton to a runoff.

By the end of the night, Land Commissioner George P. Bush secured a clear, five-point lead over the other two candidates.

But in the five-way Democratic primary for the position, the results were not as clear.

Rochelle Garza, a former American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) attorney, held a lead over her opponents as Paxton did over his, but the race for second place was much closer.

Former Galveston Mayor Joe Jaworski and Lee Merritt, a civil rights attorney from Dallas, have been in a contentious standoff since Tuesday night.

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By unofficial tallies, Jaworski maintained a slight lead of 1,500 votes as of the morning after the election.

But with election problems in Harris County and the vote count still uncertain, the race was too close to call and Merritt held out hope that results would ultimately turn to his favor.

However, as Harris County slowly clarified its ballot count, Jaworski’s lead widened slightly.

Given those results, Merritt announced on Thursday that he was suspending his campaign and endorsing Garza.

“She has demonstrated that she can run a campaign that can energize our base that reflects the diversity of our party,” said Merritt. “She and I had a conversation just yesterday about my plans to join her on the campaign trail to encourage young progressive voters to engage in the process.”

Merritt said he would explore possible legal action related to the primary election more broadly, particularly related to his criticisms of the recently enacted GOP election reform bill. But he said that those actions would not be on behalf of his campaign and that he would not pursue a recount.

The suspension of Merritt’s campaign solidifies the runoff between Garza and Jaworski, which will be held on May 24.

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Daniel Friend

Daniel Friend is the Marketing and Media Manager for The Texan. After graduating with a double-major in Political Science and Humanities, he wrote for The Texan as a reporter through June 2022. In his spare time, you're likely to find him working on The Testimony of Calvin Lewis, an Abolition of Man-inspired novel and theatrical podcast.