AUSTIN (Nexstar) — The race for lieutenant governor is one of the top races we’re watching in the November 2022 election.

Dan Patrick and Mike Collier are running against each other for the second time.

We’ve seen their political ads all over TV for weeks now. But who are these two candidates? This matters, because whoever wins will have a huge influence over Texas’ legislative policies and outlining the state’s budget.

It’s a rematch of the closely contested 2018 election. Collier, the Democratic candidate, lost to Republican incumbent Patrick by just five points.

Collier has campaigned almost nonstop for the last three years, focusing on public education, fixing the power grid and criminal justice reform.  

“As I drive around the state and talk to people, are we better off than we were four years ago or eight years ago with Dan Patrick as lieutenant governor? The answer is absolutely no,” Collier said. “We have a grid that doesn’t work, property taxes that are exploding, public education that’s underfunded. Sixty-five to 70% of teachers are thinking about doing something else.”

Patrick has run most of his campaign on property tax relief, securing the border, giving parents a choice in their kids’ education and raising teacher pay.

“Under my leadership, we have put more money into public education than any lieutenant governor in history,” Patrick said. “The other side does not line up with the values of West Texas, Central Texas and rural Texas.”

Both are confident in their ability to win.

Patrick did not grant our request for a one-on-one interview for this story. We used quotes from an interview he did with our sister station in Lubbock.

School safety is top of mind for both candidates after Uvalde. Patrick is honing in on the importance of securing campuses, while Collier points to gun safety policies.