Elections 2022Texas State House Races to Watch in 2022

With over a sixth of Texas House members leaving at the end of their term, here is a list of races to watch in 2022.
January 6, 2022
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With 26 open Texas House seats, over one-sixth of the 150 members in the chamber are guaranteed to be freshmen members in the legislature.

Added to that, 30 current Republicans and 11 current Democrats — including two who are running against each other — have challengers from their own party who they will face in the March 1, 2022 primary elections.

The vast slate of new candidates is sure to reshape the landscape of Texas politics, but thanks to the recent redistricting process, the general election in November will be less competitive between Republicans and Democrats than in previous cycles.

Prior to the process, there were 33 House districts where partisan leanings based on the Texas Partisan Index (TPI) favored Republicans or Democrats with equal to or less than 55 percent against the other party.

Now the number of competitive districts within that range has fallen to eight — and the incumbent in one of those districts, Rep. Tracy King (D-Batesville), has no Republican or Democratic challengers.

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After the primary election slated for March 1, runoff elections for races where no candidate receives over 50 percent of the vote will be held on May 24, and the general election will be held on November 8.

Below is a list of the primary and general election races to keep an eye on throughout 2022.

Republican Primaries in Open Seats:

  • House District (HD) 13
    • Rep. Ben Leman (R-Anderson) announced his retirement.
    • The new map shifted the district boundaries north so that the district now includes a portion of Waco in McLennan County, as well as the entire counties of Bosque, Falls, Freestone, Hill, Leon, and Limestone.
    • Two Republicans are competing for the seat: Angelia Orr and Dennis Wilson.
  • HD 17
    • Rep. John Cyrier (R-Lockhart) announced his retirement.
    • The new map shifted the district northward so that it continues to include Caldwell, Bastrop, and Lee counties, but now also includes Burleson and Milam counties.
    • Five Republicans are competing for the seat: Jen Bezner, Stan Gerdes, Tom Glass, Paul Pape, and Trey Rutledge.
  • HD 19
    • Rep. James White (R-Hillister) is running for agriculture commissioner.
    • Previously located in East Texas, HD 19 is now located in the Hill Country and parts of Travis County.
    • Four Republicans are vying for the seat: Justin Berry, Nubia Devine, Perla Hopkins, and Ellen Troxclair.
  • HD 23
    • Rep. Mayes Middleton (R-Wallisville) is running for Senate District (SD) 11.
    • The district remained mostly the same under the new map, with the district located in not quite half of Galveston County and all of Chambers County.
    • Four Republicans are competing for the seat: Patrick Gurski, Abel Longoria, Gina Smith, and Teresa Leo-Wilson.
  • HD 37
    • The Rio Grande Valley district held by Rep. Alex Dominguez (D-Brownsville) — who was drawn into HD 38 and is now running for SD 27 — was redistricted so that its population anchor is in Harlingen instead of Brownsville.
    • Its TPI shifted from D-64% to D-53%.
    • Two Republicans are competing for the nomination: Janie Lopez and George Rivera.
  • HD 52
    • Currently represented by Rep. James Talarico (D-Round Rock), the Williamson County district was redrawn to favor Republicans with its TPI shifting from D-53% to R-55%.
    • Four Republicans are competing in the primary: Caroline Harris, Nelson Jarrin, Patrick McGuinness, and Jonathan Schober.
  • HD 57
    • Previously located in East Texas, the district is now located in Denton County and favors Republicans with an R-60% TPI.
    • Three Republicans are competing for the seat: Matthew Haines, Richard Hayes, and Matthew Poole.
  • HD 61
    • Rep. Phil King (R-Weatherford) is running for SD 10 and his district, which included Parker and Wise counties under the old map, was redrawn into Collin County.
    • The new district has a TPI of R-58%.
    • Three Republicans are competing for the seat: Paul Chabot, Frederick Frazier, and James Herblin.
  • HD 63
    • Rep. Tan Parker (R-Flower Mound) is running for SD 12.
    • The new district, which remains in Denton County but was shifted to include more portions of Lewisville and Carrollton, has a TPI of R-57%.
    • Four Republicans are competing for the nomination: Ben Bumgarner, Jake Collier, Nick Sanders, and Jeff Younger.
  • HD 65
    • Currently represented by Rep. Michelle Beckley (D-Carrollton), the Denton County district was redrawn to favor Republicans with its TPI shifting from D-51% to R-58%.
    • Three Republicans are competing for the nomination: Robert Cooksey, Peyton Inge, and Kronda Thimesch.
  • HD 70
    • Rep. Scott Sanford (R-McKinney) announced his retirement.
    • Sanford’s Collin County district was redrawn to become more competitive, shifting from a TPI of R-59% to D-50%.
    • Five Republicans are competing for the nomination: Eric Bowlin, LaDale Buggs, Daniel Chandler, Jamee Jolly, and Hayden Padgett.
  • HD 73
    • Rep. Kyle Biedermann (R-Fredericksburg) announced his retirement after he was drawn into the new HD 19 and the boundaries of HD 73 were redrawn to include only Comal County and portions of Hays County.
    • Three Republicans are competing for the nomination within the new boundaries: Barron Casteel, George Green, and Carrie Isaac.
  • HD 84
    • Rep. John Frullo (R-Lubbock) announced his retirement.
    • Though its boundaries were adjusted, the district remains entirely within Lubbock County.
    • Four Republicans are competing for the seat: David Glasheen, Cheryl Little, Carl Tepper, and Kade Wilcox.
  • HD 93
    • After briefly launching a bid for attorney general, Rep. Matt Krause (R-Fort Worth) ultimately filed to run for the position of Tarrant County District Attorney.
    • Three Republicans are running for his Tarrant County district: Laura Hill, Cary Moon, and Nate Schatzline.
  • HD 122
    • Rep. Lyle Larson (R-San Antonio) announced his retirement.
    • The district lines remained similar throughout the redistricting process but shifted slightly to cover more of northwest Bexar County.
    • Four Republicans are vying for the seat: Adam Blanchard, Elisa Chan, Mark Daniel Cuthbert, and Mark Dorazio.
  • HD 127
    • Rep. Dan Huberty (R-Houston) announced his retirement.
    • The district in northeast Harris County remained largely the same throughout redistricting.
    • Two Republicans are vying for the seat: Charles Cunningham and Deanna Robertson.
  • HD 133
    • Rep. Jim Murphy (R-Houston) announced his retirement.
    • The Harris County seat remained largely unchanged, though the cities of Spring Valley Village and Hilshire Village were moved into a neighboring district.
    • Five Republicans are vying for the nomination: Shelley Torian Barineau, Mano DeAyala, Will Franklin, Bert Keller, and Greg Travis.

Republican Incumbents Facing Primary Challenges:

  • HD 1: Rep. Gary VanDeaver (R-New Boston)
    • George Lavender
    • Ray Null
  • HD 2: Rep. Bryan Slaton (R-Royse City)
    • Clyde Bostick
  • HD 3: Rep. Cecil Bell (R-Magnolia)
    • Kelly McDonald
  • HD 5: Rep. Cole Hefner (R-Mount Pleasant)
    • Dewey Collier
  • HD 6: Rep. Matt Schaefer (R-Tyler)
    • Charles Turner
  • HD 11: Rep. Travis Clardy (R-Nacogdoches)
    • Greg Caldwell
    • Rachel Hale
    • Mark Williams
  • HD 12: Rep. Kyle Kacal (R-College Station)
    • Joshua Hamm
    • Ben Bius
  • HD 14: Rep. John Raney (R-College Station)
    • John Harvey Slocum
  • HD 15: Rep. Steve Toth (R-The Woodlands)
    • Maris Blair
  • HD 18: Rep. Ernest Bailes (R-Shepherd)
    • Janis Holt
    • Stephen Missick
    • Ronnie Tullos
  • HD 28: Rep. Gary Gates (R-Rosenberg)
    • Robert Boettcher
  • HD 31: Rep. Ryan Guillen (R-Rio Grande City)
    • Alena Berlanga
    • Mike Monreal
  • HD 33: Rep. Justin Holland (R-Rockwall)
    • Scott LaMarca
    • Dennis London
  • HD 53: Rep. Andrew Murr (R-Junction)
    • Wesley Virdell
  • HD 60: Rep. Glenn Rogers (R-Graford)
    • Kit Marshall
    • Mike Olcott
    • Lucas Turner
  • HD 62: Rep. Reggie Smith (R-Sherman)
    • Shelley Luther
  • HD 64: Rep. Lynn Stucky (R-Denton)
    • Andy Hopper
  • HD 67: Rep. Jeff Leach (R-Plano)
    • Julia Schmoker
  • HD 68: Rep. David Spiller (R-Jacksboro)
    • Craig Carter
    • Gary Franklin
    • Mark Middleton
  • HD 71: Rep. Stan Lambert (R-Abilene)
    • Samuel Weatherby
  • HD 81: Rep. Brooks Landgraf (R-Odessa)
    • Casey Gray
  • HD 83: Rep. Dustin Burrows (R-Lubbock)
    • Austin Jordan
  • HD 85: Rep. Phil Stephenson (R-Wharton)
    • Art Hernandez
    • Stan Kitzman
    • Fred Roberts
  • HD 88: Rep. Ken King (R-Canadian)
    • Ted Hutto
  • HD 91: Rep. Stephanie Klick (R-Fort Worth)
    • Benjamin Damico
    • David Lowe
    • Anthony Reed
    • David Silvey
  • HD 98: Rep. Giovanni Capriglione (R-Southlake)
    • Mitchell Ryan
  • HD 121: Rep. Steve Allison (R-San Antonio)
    • Michael Champion
  • HD 132: Rep. Michael Schofield (R-Katy)
    • Erik Le
  • HD 138: Rep. Lacey Hull (R-Houston)
    • Josh Flynn
    • Christine Kalmbach
    • Stephanie Morales
  • HD 150: Rep. Valoree Swanson (R-Spring)
    • Bryan Le
    • Valerie McGilvrey
    • Deborah Riddle

Democratic Primaries in Open Seats:

  • HD 22
    • Rep. Joe Deshotel (D-Beaumont) announced his retirement.
    • Though its boundaries shifted to contain less of Beaumont and more of Port Arthur and some smaller cities, HD 22 remains entirely in Jefferson County with a TPI of D-61%.
    • Three Democrats are competing for the seat: Christian Hayes, Joseph Paul Trahan, and Lisa Weber.
  • HD 37
    • Rep. Alex Dominguez (D-Brownsville) was drawn into HD 38 and he decided to run for SD 27, leaving HD 37 open.
    • The district was redrawn to be more competitive, shifting from a TPI of D-64% to D-53%.
    • Instead of being anchored in Brownsville like before, the new district is anchored in Harlingen.
    • Three Democrats are vying for the nomination: Ruben Cortez, Frank Puente, and Luis Villarreal, Jr.
  • HD 38
    • Rep. Eddie Lucio III (D-Brownsville) announced that he would not seek reelection in 2022.
    • Two Democrats are competing for the Rio Grande Valley district: Erin Gamez and Jonathan Gracia.
  • HD 50
    • Rep. Celia Israel (D-Austin) announced that she was exploring a bid to run for mayor of Austin and that she would not seek reelection to the Texas House.
    • After his Williamson County district was redrawn to favor Republicans, Rep. James Talarico (D-Austin) decided to run for office in the neighboring HD 50.
    • One other Democrat is running against Talarico in the primary, David Alcorta.
  • HD 51
    • Rep. Eddie Rodriguez (D-Austin) is running for Congress in the new boundaries of Texas’ 35th Congressional District.
    • Seven Democrats are competing for the Travis County seat: Cody Arn, Albino “Bino” Cadenas, Maria Luisa “Lulu” Flores, Mike Hendrix, Claire Campos-O’Neal, Cynthia Valadez-Mata, and Matt Worthington.
  • HD 70
    • Rep. Scott Sanford (R-McKinney) announced his retirement.
    • Sanford’s Collin County district was redrawn to become more competitive, shifting from a TPI of R-59% to D-50%.
    • Three Democrats are vying for the nomination: Cassandra Garcia Hernandez, Mihaela Plesa, and Lorenzo Sanchez.
  • HD 76
    • With the low population growth in El Paso County, Rep. Claudia Ordaz Perez’s (D-El Paso) district was moved to Fort Bend County.
    • The new district favors Democrats with a TPI of D-61%.
    • Four Democrats are competing for the seat: James Burnett, L. Sarah DeMerchant, Vanesia Johnson, and Suleman Lalani.
  • HD 92
    • Rep. Jeff Cason (R-Bedford) announced he would not seek reelection after his Tarrant County district was redrawn to favor Democrats with a TPI of D-60%.
    • Three Democrats are competing for the seat: Salman Bhojani, Tracy Scott, and Dinesh Sharma.
  • HD 100
    • Rep. Jasmine Crockett (D-Dallas) is running for Congress in Texas’ 30th Congressional District.
    • Four Democrats are competing for the Dallas County Texas House seat: Daniel Davis Clayton, Sandra Crenshaw, Marquis Hawkins, and Venton Jones.
  • HD 114
    • Rep. John Turner (D-Dallas) announced that he would not seek reelection in 2022.
    • The new boundaries of the district increased the favorability toward Democrats, shifting its TPI from D-52% to D-65%.
    • Five Democrats are competing for the seat: John Bryant, Charles Gearing, Alexandra Guio, Chris Leal, and Kendall Scudder.
  • HD 124
    • Rep. Ina Minjarez (D-San Antonio) is running for Bexar County judge.
    • Three Democrats are competing for the seat: Josey Garcia, Steven Gilmore, and Gerald Brian Lopez.
  • HD 147
    • Rep. Garnet Coleman (D-Houston) announced his retirement from the legislature.
    • Seven Democrats are competing for the seat: Danielle Keys Bess, Reagan Denise Flowers, Akwete Hines, Somtoochukwu Ik-Ejiofor, Jolanda Jones, Nam Subramanian, and Aurelia Wagner.

Democratic Incumbents Facing Primary Challenges:

  • HD 27: Rep. Ron Reynolds (D-Missouri City)
    • Rodrigo Carreon
  • HD 42: Rep. Richard Peña Raymond (D-Laredo)
    • Jorge Delgado
  • HD 45: Rep. Erin Zwiener (D-Driftwood)
    • Jessica Mejia
    • Angela Villescaz
  • HD 75: Rep. Mary González (D-Clint)
    • Rene Rodriguez
  • HD 79: Rep. Art Fierro (D-El Paso)
    • After Rep. Claudia Ordaz Perez (D-El Paso) was drawn into the district of Rep. Lina Ortega (D-El Paso) when HD 76 was moved from El Paso County to Fort Bend County, Ordaz Perez decided to run against Fierro instead.
  • HD 113: Rep. Rhetta Bowers (D-Garland)
    • Uduakobong Nkanga
  • HD 125: Rep. Ray Lopez (D-San Antonio)
    • Eric Michael Garza
  • HD 131: Rep. Alma Allen (D-Houston)
    • Crystal Dillard
    • James Guillory
  • HD 142: Rep. Harold Dutton, Jr. (D-Houston)
    • Candis Houston

Competitive General Election Races:

  • HD 37
    • South Texas is the new battleground that Republicans hope to win, and GOP lawmakers worked toward that goal by drawing the new boundaries of HD 37 to be more favorable to Republicans with a TPI of D-53% instead of D-64%.
    • Votes in the past two election cycles have varied based on the candidate.
    • In 2018, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) and Gov. Greg Abbott received 45.6 percent and 53 percent, respectively. In 2020, President Donald Trump and Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) received 48.4 and 48.1 percent, respectively.
    • Among all statewide candidates on the ballot in 2018 and 2020, the median Republican vote against Democrats increased from 46.4 percent to 47.9 percent.
    • With Rep. Alex Dominguez (D-Brownsville) drawn into a different district and running for the state Senate, two Republicans and three Democrats are competing for the new Harlingen-anchored House district.
  • HD 52
    • Though Rep. James Talarico (D-Round Rock) opted to run in a different district since the Williamson County seat was made more favorable to Republicans, HD 52 remains one of the most competitive districts in the state with a TPI of R-55%.
    • The winner of the Republican primary race will face Luis Echegaray, the only Democrat to file for the seat, in the November general election.
  • HD 54
    • The Bell County district represented by Rep. Brad Buckley (R-Killeen) was redrawn to shore up GOP votes, shifting the TPI from R-52% to R-55%.
    • Though more favorable to the Republican incumbent, the district is one of the top ten most competitive House seats in the state.
    • Buckley, who has no primary challengers, will face Jonathan Hildner, the only Democrat to file for the district.
  • HD 70
    • With the retirement of Rep. Scott Sanford (R-McKinney), Republican lawmakers agreed to changes to the state map that would add in a new Republican-leaning district but would redraw HD 70 be a competitive seat with a D-50% TPI, making it the most competitive seat in the state.
    • In 2018, Cruz and Abbott received 45.7 percent and 52.5 percent, respectively. In 2020, Trump and Cornyn received 43.6 and 47.5 percent, respectively.
    • Among all statewide candidates on the ballot in 2018 and 2020, the median Democratic vote against Republicans increased from 49.8 percent to 51 percent.
  • HD 112
    • The Dallas County district represented by Rep. Angie Chen Button (R-Richardson) was redrawn to shore up GOP votes, shifting the TPI from D-52% to R-55%.
    • Though more favorable to the Republican incumbent, the district is one of the top ten most competitive House seats in the state.
    • Button, who has no primary challengers, will face Elva Curl, the only Democrat to file for the district.
  • HD 115
    • The partisan leaning of HD 115, represented by Rep. Julie Johnson (D-Carrollton), remained unchanged after redistricting at a TPI of D-55%, making it one of the top ten most competitive districts in the state.
    • Johnson, who has no primary challengers, will face Melisa Denis, the only Republican to file for the district.
  • HD 118
    • Next to HD 70, HD 118 is the second most competitive district in the state with a TPI of R-50%, which was shifted during redistricting to favor Republicans from a previous TPI of D-57%.
    • Rep. John Lujan (R-San Antonio) was elected in a special election last year after Rep. Leo Pacheco (D-San Antonio) resigned from the seat.
    • Lujan’s runoff opponent in the special election, Democrat Frank Ramirez, was the only Democrat to file for the 2022 general election, solidifying a rematch between the two.

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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.