‘Big night in Texas!’ Trump touts endorsement power as Gov. Abbott wins primary with ease

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Former President Donald J. Trump seems quite happy with the results of Tuesday’s GOP primary in Texas.

“Big night in Texas! All 33 candidates that were Trump endorsed have either won their primary election or are substantially leading in the case of a runoff. Governor Abbott and Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick have won in a landslide. Thank you, and congratulations to all!” Trump declared triumphantly in a statement shared online by the Save America political action committee.

In a follow-up to his victory lap, Trump said, “All 33 Trump-Endorsed candidates won last night in Texas, or are substantially leading. Big night! How will the Fake News make it look bad?”

Although he has prompted criticism in some quarters for being insufficiently MAGA, Abbott easily fended a challenge from businessman and ex-state senator Don Huffines and retired  Lt. Col. Allen West, the former chair of the Texas Republican Party and an ex-Florida congressman, and five others.

In the November general election, Gov. Abbott will face failed 2018 U.S. Senate and 2020 presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke, a Democrat who served three terms in the U.S. House of Representatives.

In excess of 800,000 Texas voters reportedly voted Republican rather than Democrat in Tuesday’s primary, which should augur well for the entire GOP ticket in November.

In the context of Trump’s “substantially leading” terminology, incumbent GOP Attorney General Ken Paxton, who is under a legal cloud, is headed to a May 24 runoff with George P. Bush, “low-energy” Jeb Bush’s son and the state’s outgoing land commissioner.

“The race pits a two-term incumbent backed by former President Donald Trump against a member of a Bush family dynasty that stretches back decades in the state,” the Texas Tribune explained.

Needing to break 50 percent to avoid the second round, Paxton got about 43 percent of the vote to Bush’s 22 percent in a four-way primary contest.

About the younger Bush, Trump said in the past that “This is the only Bush that likes me. This is the Bush that got it right. I like him.”

“Meanwhile, the status quo was largely preserved in the Texas Legislature. No state Senate incumbents lost their seats Tuesday night. In the House, one sitting Democrat lost and no incumbent Republicans were knocked out, though a few were forced into runoffs. Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick and House Speaker Dade Phelan both saw the vast majority of their favored candidates win primaries in the chambers they preside over,” the news outlet added.

Dawn Buckingham, who also received the coveted Trump endorsement, is headed to a runoff for the land commissioner job to succeed Bush.

U.S. Rep. Van Taylor, who represents a Dallas-area district is also going to a runoff with Collin County Judge Keith Self. Both men are military veterans. Taylor, whom Trump did not endorse, voted for the January 6 Committee when it was originally conceived as a bipartisan investigation and also voted to certify the results of Election 2020.

“Of the four incumbents snubbed by Trump, Taylor was the only one who faced a serious challenge, though he enjoyed a 4-1 financial edge over three opponents. The others sailed through the primaries: Reps. Dan Crenshaw of Humble, Tony Gonzales of San Antonio and Chip Roy of Austin. Rep. Pete Sessions of Waco, formerly of Dallas, was the only Texas Republican who failed to get on Trump’s list even though he did vote to challenge Biden’s win,” the Dallas Morning News reported. “But like the other incumbents who did get Trump’s seal of approval, he faced only token opposition and he coasted to a win Tuesday night.”

Incumbent Democrat Congressman Henry Cuellar, a moderate, is set for a May runoff against far-left, Ocasio-Cortez-endorsed immigration attorney Jessica Cisneros in a May runoff as well. “Republicans have made gains in recent years in South Texas, and the nomination of a more progressive Democrat could be seen as an opportunity for the GOP to flip the seat,” the Tribune noted.


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