There was little excitement in local-level partisan races, as the one contested election in Hopkins County went strongly Republican.
Tracy Orr Smith defeated Reiko Alexander in the county clerk’s race. Smith won by an 80-20 percent margin, taking 9,454 total votes to 2,274 for Alexander. Smith replaces incumbent Debbie Shirley.
Other county races on the ballot were all uncontested with only Republican candidates.
Robert Newsom was re-elected as county judge with 10,272 votes. Greg Anglin was elected as Precinct 2 County Commissioner, replacing Mike Odell, with 1,925 votes. Joe Price was elected as Precinct 4 County Commissioner, replacing Danny Evans, taking 2,713 votes. Clay Harrison was elected County Court-at-Law Judge, replacing Amy Smith, with 10,122 votes. Cheryl Fulcher was re-elected District Clerk with 10,107 votes. Danny Davis was elected County Treasurer, replacing Jim Thompson, with 10,010. B.J. Teer was re-elected Justice of the Peace Precinct 1, with 5,014 votes, and Brad Cummings was re-elected Justice of the Peace Precinct 2, with 5,169 votes.
NON-PARTISAN LOCAL ELECTIONS
The city of Cumby had council elections, and three local school districts had trustee elections in non-partisan contests.
Cumby Mayor Cathy Hall-Carter was re-elected without opposition. She received 97 votes. In Place 1, Alderman Douglas Simmerman was re-elected by a 74-26 percent margin over challenger Larry White. The vote differential was 114-41. In Place 2, Kristin Thompson was elected over Johnene McLarry with a 69-31 percent split. Thompson had 96 votes to 44 for McLarry.
In North Hopkins Independent School District, five candidates were vying for two at-large positions. Allen Joslin took 218 votes and Nichole Vaughn received 207 to win the races. Robert McPherson was third with 191, Sherry Smiddy fourth with 185 and Lori Timko fifth with 167.
Miller Grove Independent School District, based on results from Hopkins County, plus Rains County, had selected three candidates for at-large spots.
Brandon Darrow had 274 votes, 266 of those from Hopkins County. Bret Garrett had 280 total with 262 from Hopkins County, and Ray Sparks had 259 with 247 from Hopkins County. Douglas Lewis was a distant fourth with 99 votes, 95 of them Hopkins County votes, and Brandon Kilpatrick was fifth with 78 total, all from Hopkins County.
Cumby Independent School District residents were voting on two at-large spots, with five candidates on the ballot. A portion of the district is in Hunt County.
Kyle Pettit and David Tremor were elected. Pettit had 297 total votes with 276 in Hopkins County and 21 in Hunt County. Tremor, with 228 total votes, 206 in Hopkins County and 22 in Hunt County, narrowly edged out Jimmy Helfferich. Helfferich had 225 votes overall, 217 in Hopkins County and eight in Hunt County. Cody Talley was fourth with 162 votes, 152 in Hopkins and 14 in Hunt, and Wesley Thompson was fifth with 66 votes, 58 and eight from the two counties.
In two legislative races for local seats, Republican incumbents held on to their positions.
In State Senate District 2, Bob Hall held off Democratic challenger Kendall Scudder by a 59-41 percent margin. In Hopkins County, the split was much wider, 76-24 percent. Hall had 8,290 votes to 2,869 for Scudder in the county.
For State Representative, District 2, Dan Flynn had a 80-20 percentage point victory over Bill Brannon. That exactly matched Hopkins County, where Flynn had 9,364 votes to 2,421 for Brannon.
Republican incumbents were returned to office in all statewide races, though many had narrower margins than in 2014.
Gov. Greg Abbott defeated his Democratic challenger, former Dallas County Sheriff Lupe Valdez, by a 56-42 margin, and Libertarian Mark Tippetts had just under 2 percent.
Abbott was the only Republican with a double-digit margin of victory by percentage points, though. Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick beat Democrat Mike Collier with a 51-46 percent margin and Libertarian Kerry McKennon at 2 percent. Patrick was elected in 2014 by a 19 percent edge.
Attorney General Ken Paxton led Democratic challenger Justin Nelson by the same 51-47 percent margin and Libertarian Michael Ray Harris at 2 percent. Paxton had a 21-percentage point margin in his 2014 win.
Glenn Hegar took a 53-43 percent win over Democrat Joi Chevalier in the Controller’s race. Ben Sanders, the Libertarian candidate, had 3 percent.
George P. Bush had a 54-43 percent victory over Miguel Suazo in the race for General Land Office commissioner, with Libertarian Matt Pina at 3 percent.
Sid Miller won the Agriculture Commissioner race by a 51-46 percent margin over Democrat Kim Olson, with Libertarian Richard Carpenter at 2 percent.
Cristi Craddick was re-elected to the Texas Railroad Commission with a 53-44 percent margin over Roman McAllen. Libertarian Mike Wright took 3 percent.
Republicans handily retained control of the Texas House and Texas Senate but with narrower margins than in the previous session of the Texas Legislature.
Democrats gained 12 House seats Tuesday night, narrowing the party division from 95-55 to 83-67.
Democrats gained two seats in the Texas Senate. That narrows the margin from 21-10 to 19-12 in favor of Republicans.
The race that was a chief factor in driving more than 8 million Texans to the polls in a surge of voter enthusiasm, the U.S. Senate race between incumbent Republican Ted Cruz and Democratic challenger Beto O’Rourke was as close as the tightest polls predicted.
Cruz held off O’Rourke by a narrow 50.9-48.3 percent margin. Libertarian Neal Dikeman took the final 0.8 percent of the vote.
In the U.S. Congress race for District 4, incumbent John Ratcliffe easily defeated Democratic challenger Catherine Krantz. He took 9,391 votes in Hopkins County to 2,321 for her, 79.5 to 19.5 percent. Libertarian Ken Ashby received just under 1 percent of the vote with 108 total votes.
Across the district, Ratcliffe won by a 76-23 percent margin, with Ashby taking 1 percent.
The Democrats regained control of the House of Representatives with an expected 229 seats compared to 206 for Republicans. The current margin is 235-193 Republican, with seven vacant seats. The GOP expanded its Senate control, though, from a 51-49 margin to 53-47.
Women set a new record for members of the House with an expected 100 members in next year’s Congress. The previous record, according to Congressional Research Service, is 84. Among those 100 women are Congress’ first two American Indian female members and its first two Muslim female members.