Tonight’s runoff elections produced important wins around the Lone Star State for conservatives. Most significantly, three major leaders in the Democrat-enabling House Republican leadership were defeated.
On the other side of the Capitol, the Texas Senate was markedly improved with conservatives handedly winning the two open seats.
In the biggest upset of the evening, taxpayer champion Wayne Christian defeated establishment candidate Gary Gates in the race for Railroad Commission. Despite Gates spending untold millions in six previous runs for public office, conservatives made sure seven wasn’t his lucky number.
Christian was a strong conservative leader of the Texas House, but was drawn out of his seat by the leadership team of House Speaker Joe Straus. Gates had aligned himself with Straus’ team in this election.
Meanwhile, three of the top committee chairs for Straus were defeated in various contests.
Susan King of Abilene lost in her bid to be promoted out of the House, while Wayne Smith of Baytown and Doug Miller of New Braunfels were ousted by Texans for Fiscal Responsibility endorsees Briscoe Cain and Kyle Biedermann, respectively.
Both Biedermann and Cain prevailed against nasty, deceitful campaigns – funded by the Austin cronies of Straus – designed to attack their families, children, and character.
In east Texas, Cole Hefner won a decisive victory in the open-seat House District 5 race.
In the Texas Senate, taxpayer champion Bryan Hughes won the open-seat SD1 race to replace Kevin Eltife, a long-time obstructionist to conservative reforms. Meanwhile, in SD24, newcomer Dawn Buckingham defeated liberal Republican Susan King.
Consider this election-night fact: in the seven years of his speakership, not a single Straus loyalist has been “promoted” out of the Texas House. Not a one.
Texas voters want serious conservatives who will govern with the principles upon which they campaign. Tonight was a major victory for conservatives.