Rounding up what happened yesterday...
Radnofsky received about 60 percent of the vote against San Antonio retiree Gene Kelly, who shares the same name as a late movie star. Radnofsky, a mediation specialist at Vinson & Elkins, said her race against Hutchison now will turn into a "referendum" on the direction of the country.
"I'm calling for debates right now," Radnofsky said, saying she would like to have debates on education, health care, veteran affairs and the economy. "If we talked about the economy, we could talk about whether Senator Hutchison really brings home the bacon the way she claims ... when Texas is ranked 47th in bringing home the bacon."
Hutchison issued a statement saying she looks forward to the general election campaign. "I look forward to the campaign ahead and the opportunity to discuss the issues important to Texans," she said. "I have been proud to serve the people of our great state and, if re-elected, I will continue to be a senator for all Texans."
Edwards, 68, first elected to the south Houston district in 1978, staked his re-election bid on his seniority — saying he could be removed, but not replaced.
Miles, 40, who owns a Farmers Insurance Agency office in the Third Ward, was the first challenger Edwards had faced in more than a decade.
"I'm committed to the people of 146 and not the special interests," Miles said. "The people of the district said they want their voices heard in Austin and now they have it."
Miles said that he would focus on improving access to small-business loans and increasing home ownership by expanding Land Bank legislation, which aims to turn tax-delinquent property into affordable housing. He said he also would make constituent services a priority.
Miles contended that Edwards has been inattentive to the district's needs and had developed a sense of entitlement to the seat.
Edwards conceded the race to Miles around 10 p.m. He told supporters at his election night party that it had been a long run and he was grateful to serve them.
"The people have spoken, and he's accepted the results," said state Rep. Sylvester Turner, D-Houston. "He's had a tremendous ride. He's proud of his service and he wishes the district well."
This is gonna drive me crazy:
Miles will be the favorite in November against Libertarian nominee Gerald W. "Jerry" LaFleur. No Republican sought the seat.
In the Republican runoff for the open House District 133 seat, Houston Community College Trustee Jim Murphy took 53 percent to defeat lawyer Mike Schofield.
The district voted 56 percent Republican in 2004 statewide elections, so the GOP runoff winner will be the favorite in the November general election against Democrat Kristi Thibaut and Libertarian Chris Camero.
State Rep. Richard Raymond, in a runoff with former Webb County Judge Mercurio Martinez, held his seat. I can't find a newspaper account of this, for some odd reason.
"I'm very pleased to see that all our work the last few months has turned out to be something that I believe will be good for Democrats in November," Ms. Alvarado said Tuesday night.
Asked what paved the way for her victory, she said, "I spent a lot of time on the road, and I think my ideas about education, health care and immigration resonated with voters."
For Ms. Alvarado, the goal of winning the state's number two office will get much tougher as she faces Mr. Dewhurst, a one-time Houston millionaire businessman who is prepared to spend several million dollars to win re-election to his second term this November.
The 49-year-old Democrat said her success may ride on efforts by the Legislature to fix the state's troubled school finance system this spring. Lawmakers have failed several times – dating to 2003 – to come up with a new education funding plan.
As leader of the Senate, Ms. Alvarado said, Mr. Dewhurst shares the blame for those failures.
"Unless something happens in the next few months and his performance improves, I don't see why I won't have an excellent chance in November," she said.
In a congressional district stretching from Northwest Austin to West Houston, Ted Ankrum of Cypress, outside Houston, has bested Paul Foreman of Austin.
In the fall, Ankrum will face first-term U.S. Rep. Michael McCaul, R-Austin, in the eight-county 10th Congressional District, which was redrawn by state lawmakers to GOP advantage in 2003.
On Tuesday night, Ankrum vowed a campaign focused on McCaul's alliance with national Republicans. "McCaul represents the Republican leadership, not the people of the district," he said.
On the GOP side, the big race was for the Court of Criminal Appeals. After initially knocking both his opponents off the ballot on technicalities, former State Rep. Terry Keel lost in the runoff to incumbent Charles Holcomb.
"Well, for the first time since I was 24 years old, when I became an assistant district attorney, I'm going to be a private citizen. I kind of look forward to it," said Keel, 48.
"You know, I campaigned hard, but it's very difficult to challenge an incumbent in your own party, especially when you have a low turnout like this. But I knew that going into this, so I'm not unhappy," Keel said.
Statewide turnout was less than 2 percent.
Holcomb, 72, was seeking a second term on the state's highest criminal court, but he will have to step down in September 2008, when he meets the mandatory retirement age for judges, 75. The governor appoints his replacement.
Keel said he wasn't thinking about lining up for Holcomb's seat. "That's something down the road that's to be discussed in the context of a couple years from now," he said.
Nor did Keel rule out seeking a future office, saying "you never say never."
Keel carried most large counties Tuesday, but Holcomb dominated the rural areas to stave off an upset. Holcomb had topped Keel by 75,000 votes in a three-way March primary to lead 45 percent to 31 percent.
In San Antonio, former aide to Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison George Antuna won in HD118, Carlos Uresti's now-open seat.
[Antuna] captured more than 81 percent of the vote in his primary runoff with Steve Salyer of Universal City, the GOP's nominee two years ago.
Antuna, a former regional director for U.S. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, declared victory at 8:30 p.m.
"I honestly believe this special day is going to propel us into the November election," Antuna told supporters packed in the back room of a Live Oak restaurant.
Antuna, 37, said he would campaign as hard for the general election in the fall as he had for the runoff.
"Our strategy is to continue getting out to meet people and to let individuals know there's an option out there," he noted.
Though Antuna's margin of victory was convincing, the number of votes putting him over the top was a pittance. Only 1,126 Republican voters decided the race.
"Even with our best efforts to motivate our folks, it was difficult to get people out to vote," said Christian Anderson of Election Support Services, who worked on Antuna's campaign.
In November's general election, Antuna will face Democrat Joe Farias, a former Harlandale Independent School District board member who avoided a runoff by defeating three opponents March 7. Libertarian James L. Thompson also is contending for the seat.
District 118, which is 64.5 percent Hispanic, snakes from South Bexar County to its northeastern corner, taking in most of Live Oak, Selma and Universal City.
Finally, another Craddickite goes down, this time in West Texas.
Drew Darby unseated state Rep. Scott Campbell in Texas House District 72, as Campbell's bid for a third straight term in office ended in Tuesday's runoff.
With all precincts reporting, Darby defeated Campbell with 60 percent of the 9,503 votes cast in the four-county district.
''It's very humbling to know I have the faith and the hopes of that many people in the district,'' Darby said.
District 72 is a Republican-leaning district that encompasses Coke, Mitchell, Scurry and Tom Green counties. Darby must still campaign this fall to beat Libertarian Dennis Higgins in November.
Jeri Slone, who as a Democratic candidate lost twice to Campbell in the general election, said early Tuesday evening that if Darby held on to his lead, she would not run as an independent. Slone filed as an independent candidate with the state in January.
''I feel strongly we need a change,'' Slone said, ''and if the (voters) in the primary make that change, I can live with that.''
Finally, as Philip notes, overall candidates backed by Speaker Craddick did poorly yesterday. I'll bet he's looking forward to that special session now even less than he had been before.
UPDATE: Forgot Eye on Williamson.Posted by Charles Kuffner on April 12, 2006 to Election 2006 | TrackBack