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Cornyn Renominated in Texas

The Texas primary was yesterday. The results are now in and there are no major surprises. As expected, Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) crushed Rep. Steve Stockman (R-TX), a tea party candidate the tea party refused to support. Stockman jumped into the race with no money, no backers, no endorsements, and no plan. All he had was a big mouth. Turns out that claiming John Cornyn is no conservative doesn't work. Cornyn got 59% of the vote, thus avoiding a runoff. Cornyn is the minority whip and as such is next in line to become minority leader if current minority leader Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) is defeated. If McConnell is defeated and the Republicans take the Senate, Cornyn could become majority leader, but without McConnell's seat, the Republicans would need to flip seven other seats to take control, a very tall order.

While Cornyn will certainly be reelected, technically there will be a general election in November and in such a big state as Texas, the Democrats probably should field a candidate. The trouble is no state senator or other politician wanted to waste half a year running. Five people filed for the office. David Alameel, a Lebanese Christian immigrant who became a dentist and then started and later sold a chain of dental clinics for a lot of money is the establishment choice. He got 47% of the vote yesterday and will face Kesha Rogers in a runoff on May 27. Rogers is a black woman who is a leader in the Lyndon LaRouche youth organization. LaRouche is an extremely controversial and difficult to classify politician. He has run for President eight times and lost all eight times. Rogers is a real piece of work. She wants to reinstate Glass-Steagall, colonize Mars, and impeach Obama. The Democratic Party wants nothing to do with her and is scared to death that if she is the Senate nominee, it could hurt state senator Wendy Davis, who has an outside shot at being elected governor of Texas. In contrast, Alameel is the American Dream incarnate: a hard-working immigrant who started with nothing and became very successful. Without the three minor candidates in the runoff, Alameel is favored to get the nomination.

As expected, for governor the Democrats nominated Wendy Davis and the Republicans nominated state attorney general Greg Abbott. Neither will face a runoff. This being Texas, Abbott is favored to win, but Davis could make the race interesting. Abbott has been a paraplegic and wheelchair user since 1984, when a oak tree fell on him during a storm. This may limit his campaigning somewhat, but being in a wheelchair didn't prevent Franklin Delano Roosevelt from being elected President four times.

For attorney general, the Democrats nominated Sam Houston. No, not THAT Sam Houston. A different Sam Houston. One who is still alive. He will face either Ken Paxton or Dan Branch, whoever wins the May runoff.

For Texas land commissioner, the Republicans nominated George Bush. No, not THAT George Bush. Also not the other George Bush. This one is Jeb Bush's eldest son. His mother, Columba Garnica Gallo Bush, was born in Mexico, making him a Latino and possibly a rising star in Texas politics. While the land commissioner is not such an important officer (he manages state lands), historically it has been a stepping stone to higher statewide office, so this Bush (George P. Bush) is someone to keep an eye on.

The only other noteworthy result yesterday was the race for lieutenant governor. David Dewhurst, the incumbent and establishment favorite who was upset by now-senator Ted Cruz in 2012, didn't even clear 50% and will face a runoff against Dan Patrick, a state senator and radio host. Clearly the race against Cruz damaged Dewhurst badly since he couldn't even get cleanly renominated for a meaningless office he already holds. He got only 28% of the vote yesterday and stands a good chance of losing the runoff to Patrick, who got 41%.

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