AUSTIN KXAN - Wednesday is the final day for candidates wishing to take over state Rep. Mark Strama's District 50 seat in the House to announce their intentions to run.
A special election is slated for Nov. 5.
Strama announced he was stepping down in February and later took the job leading Google Fiber in Austin.
The Democrat held the seat since 2004.
His district covers a good swath of north Austin through Pflugerville and east to Elgin - an area that continues to grow.
"Given that Mark Strama has held the seat for a while, the demographics have been changing, and it's somewhat of a split district between Democrats and Republicans but some might say it might be a longer shot for a Republican to win given that Strama has held it for a number of years," said Sherri Greenberg, director of Politics and Governance, LBJ School of Public Affairs.
But with a special election only two months away – political analysts believe it will take more than just being a strong candidate.
"The seat is not going to be inexpensive and there is a short time frame with this November special election called so it's really the candidate who has enough money and the ability to get out there and get the message out and has the grassroots team in place," said Greenberg.
Three Democrats have announced their intentions to run:
Jade Chang Sheppard - a University of Texas graduate who owns Gideon Contracting .
Ceclia Israel - a longtime Austin resident and political activist serving on several nonprofit boards like Alliance for Public Transportation.
Rico Reyes - an Austin attorney with an MBA and JD from the University of Texas.
Businessman Mike VanDeWalle is running as a Republican.
The winner of the election will serve out the rest of Rep. Strama’s term until January 2015.
However if that person wishes to be reelected after the special election they will have to start campaigning again shortly after the special election for the March primary to be in the November general election in 2014.
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