AUSTIN (KXAN) — Gov. Greg Abbott easily secured the GOP nomination for the General Election.
Abbott took 90 percent of the votes early on, easily beating Barbara Krueger and Secede Kilgore. He will now face whoever wins the Democratic nomination in a runoff in May.
With 12 percent of the precincts reporting, the Associated Press says Dallas County Sheriff Lupe Valdez and Andrew White, son of former Texas Gov. Mark White, will head to a runoff election in May. As of 9:30 p.m., Valdez had 43 percent of the vote and White had 29 percent.
“Healthy dialogue and good debates on how we bring common sense to Texas are critical to winning in November,” says Valdez at her watch party in Dallas. “The last few months we have discovered that all of Texas is excited and energized about change. My little truck has been through the ringer and has helped us get across the state to hear the people of Texas.” If she wins, Valdez would be the first Hispanic and openly gay governor in Texas history.
“Our governor and our government are not making decisions based on the needs of Texans,” said White at his watch party. “Doing what is right and risking the consequences has been replaced by do the expedient and forget the rest.”
“Tonight is like winning the first half of a football game. It is not a victory. Many victories were declared at half-time erroneously. We cannot take this for granted. Our future is worth far too much to take the next seven or eight months for granted,” said Abbott.
Anyone facing Abbott will have a tough time raising enough money to compete with his war chest. In January, Abbott had $43.3 in his campaign fund — a record for the most cash on hand a Texas statewide candidate has ever reported.
“That war chest sends a signal to people that any challenge to Gov. Abbott is going to be met with a massive retaliation, if you will,” said Jim Henson with the Texas Policy Project.