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Texas 27 Special Election 2018: Background and Predictions

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Texas 27 Special Election 2018

Well, it’s that just special: it’s another US House special election. This one is the Texas 27 special election, taking place on June 30, 2018.

Other US House special elections we have covered this year: Pennsylvania-18 and Arizona-08.

Texas 27 Special Election: Background

Rep. Blake Farenthold (R) resigned his seat on April 6, 2018 after seven years of service to his district. The former congressman was accused of using taxpayer money to settle a sexual harassment lawsuit. For what it’s worth, in additional to sexual harassment, he was also accused of verbal abuse amongst staffers.

Farenthold had one tough run across his several terms in office, which was the first in 2010. During this Tea Party wave election, he unseated a longtime Democratic incumbent, Solomon Ortiz. Then for 2012, his district was redrawn to be much more Republican-favorable. Its main population center is Corpus Christi, and it includes many of the areas that were affected by the landfall of Hurricane Harvey in 2017. The 27th District also juts north to Lockhart, a town east of San Antonio.

After redistricting kicked in for the 2012 election, Farenthold never won a race by less than 15 points. In 2016, he was re-elected with almost 62 percent of the vote.

Texas 27 Special Election: Candidates

For the special election, there will be a “jungle primary election” in which all candidates, regardless of party, will appear. Should no specific candidate receive a majority of the vote, the top two candidates will advance to a runoff.

The Republican candidates are Michael Cloud, former chairman of the Victoria County GOP, and Marty Perez, a medical doctor. Bech Bruun has withdrawn from the race but his name remains on the special election ballot.

Three Democrats are running: Raul “Roy” Barrera, Eric Holguin, and Mike Westergren. Barrera was the 2016 Democratic nominee, Holguin is a former congressional aide, and Westergren is a retired judge.

Cloud and Holguin won their respective party nominations for the November general election.

There are also several independent and minor-party candidates in the race. They are Judith Cutright (Ind), Chris Suprun (Ind), and Daniel Tinus (Libertarian).

Texas 27 Special Election: Prediction, June 10, 2018

Our prediction at this time is that the Republicans will retain the seat. Whether outright in the primary or in a runoff, Michael Cloud will be elected. He is the strongest Republican candidate in the running, and in this district, that will give him victory. There is a possibility this will not go to a runoff, given the fact that Bruun withdrew. A lot depends on how many votes the minor candidates suck away from Cloud and Holguin.

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