Republican primary candidates for three county and state offices in the Dallas area are headed to runoff elections in May. In all three races, candidates endorsed by Texans For Fiscal Responsibility received the majority of votes.
Dallas County Commissioners Court District 2
J.J. Koch received 43 percent of the vote in the three-way Republican race for Dallas County Commissioner District 2. The district covers northern Dallas County. Koch, an attorney and former Dallas County prosecutor, will face retired judge Vic Cunningham in the primary runoff. Cunningham finished second with 34 percent of the vote.
Koch told Texas Scorecard his campaign is happy with his strong first-place finish and is working hard to score a big win in the runoff: “Dallas County voters are tired of the go-along-to-get-along career politicians, and they want small-government problem solvers. We’re standing up for conservative values, and it’s paying off with voters.”
Cunningham decided to enter the race at the last minute because he was angry Koch had petitioned the court to remove Dallas County Elections Administrator Toni Pippins-Poole, who was caught soliciting donations from vendors.
In the general election Koch or Cunningham will face Democrat Wini Cannon, who ran unopposed in her primary. The District 2 seat is currently held by Mike Cantrell, the lone Republican on Dallas County Commissioners Court, who did not seek re-election.
Texas House District 107
Deanna Metzger drew a strong majority of GOP primary votes in Texas House District 107. But Metzger’s 45 percent wasn’t enough to avoid a runoff with Joe Ruzicka, who finished just a few votes ahead of Brad Perry. HD 107 is in east Dallas County.
Metzger, a local businesswoman who’s been active in Republican politics for years, says her campaign is thrilled to have won 45 percent of the vote: “I’m the only person in this race who can win against the radical Democrat incumbent in this swing district,” Metzger told Texas Scorecard.
The Republican runoff winner will face incumbent State Rep. Victoria Neave in November. Neave was found guilty of driving while intoxicated last year, after being arrested with a blood alcohol level nearly twice the legal limit. No other Democrat challenged Neave in the primary.
Texas Fifth Court of Appeals Place 12
Jim Pikl was the top Republican primary vote-getter for Texas’ Fifth Court of Appeals Place 12. The Dallas-based court hears civil and criminal appeals from Collin, Dallas, Grayson, Hunt, Kaufman, and Rockwall counties. Pikl, a trial and appellate lawyer, took 41 percent of the vote; attorney Randy Johnson came in a close second with 40 percent.
Pikl says he’s honored to be in the runoff and believes he has the best chance to win in November. “With that said, a runoff is it own separate campaign and turnout of conservatives on May 22 is so very important,” Pikl told Texas Scorecard. “You will see me on the campaign trail as we hit it hard about keeping the Fifth Court of Appeals conservative.”
The Republican runoff winner will compete against Democrat Ken Molberg to replace retiring Justice Bob Fillmore in the November general election.
Early voting in the May 22 primary runoff election takes place May 14 through 18.