There will be a special election for the Texas House of Representatives 68th District on Saturday, January 23, 2021.
Republicans will defend this north Texas seat which became vacant only recently, in the state’s first legislative special election of 2021. The state had five special elections in 2020; three were House seats and two were in the Senate. None resulted in partisan flips.
So far, there have been a small handful of special elections in 2021 already. Democrats won the two lower house races in Virginia, HD-2 and HD-90, on January 5, both held seats. Alabama will hold a legislative special election a few days earlier on January 19.
68th District Special Election 2021: Key Facts
PREVIOUSLY HELD BY: Drew Springer (R-Muenster). He won his election in November 2020, and then got elected to the Texas State Senate a month later.1 Springer served in the Texas House of Representatives for eight years before moving up to the Senate.
LOCATION: The 68th District encompasses a wide swath of rural north central Texas, from north of the DFW area in its east to parts of the Panhandle in the west. Some notable towns in this district include Gainesville, Jacksboro, Paducah, and Childress.
POLITICAL COMPOSITION: This is a very conservative district. Springer won the November election in a landslide and prior to that never had a general election challenger.
WHO’S RUNNING: There are four Republicans and one Democrat in the running. They are: John Berry (R-Jacksboro), Jason Brinkley (R-Gainesville), Craig Carter (R-Nocona), Charles Gregory (D-Childress), and David Spiller (R-Jacksboro).
The Texas House of Representatives
Prior to this special election, Republicans hold the majority with 82 seats. Democrats have 67 seats in the 150-seat chamber. This election will not affect the balance of power.
Texas House of Representatives 68th District Special Election: Evaluation
The 68h District is about as red as it gets. A Republican will win the seat, but which one? That’s the question its voters must figure out. Even a four-way split would not enhance Democratic chances in this seat much, given the GOP got over 85 percent in a contested election just a few months ago. We consider this a Very Safe Republican hold.
Texas House of Representatives 68th District Special Election Results
The election will proceed to a runoff with the top two candidates being Republicans. David Spiller (R) was far and away the top candidate with 43.88% of the vote according to the Texas Secretary of State. Facing him in the runoff will be Craig Carter (R), who edged out John Berry (R) for second place by 57 votes.
The lone Democrat in the race, Charles Gregory, finished in last pace.
HD-68 Runoff Results
David Spiller (R) won the all-Republican runoff, defeating Craig Carter by a margin of 63 to 37 percent. Spiller won both the early vote as well as the election day vote.
Sources: 68th District Special Election 2021 Further Reading
- Patrick Svitek, “State Rep. Drew Springer trumps Shelley Luther in Texas Senate runoff,” The Texas Tribune, 19 December 2020