In results from the March 4 Texas primary elections, the race for governor of Texas will feature Greg Abbott and Wendy Davis. And despite Tea Party challenges, the state's two top Republicans retained their seats in Congress.
John Cornyn, the No. 2 ranking Republican in the Senate, won his primary with nearly 62 percent of the vote, well over the 50 percent needed to avoid a runoff; the Dallas Morning News described it as "crushing" the Tea Party. Cornyn took the air out of social media, telling supporters at his Austin campaign headquarters that, "not everything on the Internet or on Twitter is factual."
Pete Sessions, the nine-term congressman who represents the (solidly Republican) 32nd district around north Dallas, won more than two-thirds of the vote over Tea Party challenger Katrina Pierson. Pierson lagged in fund-raising despite endorsements from Sarah Palin and Rafael Cruz, father of U.S. Senator Ted Cruz.
Lieutenant Governor David Dewhurst will face a runoff against Dan Patrick, the radio talk show host with significant Tea Party support. Despite his seeming support of gay marriage, Patrick won more votes than Dewhurst, but not enough to win the nomination. The runoff is May 27.
In another Tea Party victory over conventional Republicans, longtime State Sen. John Carona lost to Tea Party backed-candidate Don Huffines in a tight race. Carona, considered the most moderate Republican senator in Texas, served for 24 years in the Texas Legislature.
As expected, Attorney General Greg Abbott and State Senator Wendy Davis won their Republican and Democratic primaries, respectively. Their race is already one of the most expensive gubernatorial contests in the country. According to figures released in late February, Abbott's campaign had raised nearly $30 million while Davis' team had raised $11.3 million.
In another noteworthy contest, musician, humorist and perennial candidate Kinky Friedman scored himself a spot in a runoff. Friedman, who ran for governor in 2006, sought the Democratic nomination for agriculture commissioner. He and Jim Hogan will face each other in a runoff, as Hogan claimed 39 percent of the primary vote versus Friedman's 38 percent.
In the Democratic primary for senator, two candidates will meet in a runoff: David Alameel, a wealthy Dallas investor and dentist, and Kesha Rogers, a follower of extremist Lyndon LaRouche who has called for impeachment of President Barack Obama. The winner will go on to run against Cornyn.