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The 10 Most Vulnerable Republican-Held House Districts Are Shaping Up to Be Expensive Races

Top 10 Vulnerable Republican-Held House Districts

Last September, Reform Austin reported on the top 10 most vulnerable Republican-held districts in the Texas House. Since then, three of the incumbents — State Reps. Dwayne Bohac (R-Houston), Bill Zedler (R-Arlington), and Rick Miller (R-Sugar Land) — have announced their retirement, making the races for their seats even more competitive than before. 

With the final ballots set for the 2020 races and new campaign finance reports out, the following races are shaping up to be pretty expensive.

Incumbent Seats

Rep. Matt Shaheen (R-Plano) HD-66

Incumbent State Rep. Matt Shaheen outraised and outspent both of his Democratic opponents in the latter half of 2019. He raised $111,000 and spent $104,000, bringing his war chest up to $207,000.

Between the Democrats in the race, 2018 candidate for House District 66 Sharon Hirsch outraised neurologist Aimee Garza Lopez by $35,000 to $14,000. However, because Lopez loaned her campaign $116,000, she has a bigger cash advantage as compared to Hirsch, starting off 2020 with $110,000 as compared to Hirsch’s $41,000. 

Rep. Morgan Meyer (R-Dallas) HD-108

As one of the top Democrat targets in 2020, Morgan Meyer raised an impressive $321,000 and spent $119,000, outraising all three of his Democratic opponents. He also outraised the other nine incumbents in the top 10 most vulnerable Republican-held districts. Heading into 2020, Meyer has $396,000 in cash on hand.

In the three-way Democratic primary for House District 108, newcomer Shawn Terry, an attorney, outspent the two other Democratic contenders by raising $153,000. He also maintains the most cash with a cool $200,000. Incumbent Meyer has only spent $119,000 to Terry’s  $143,000. Returning challenger and teacher Joanna Cattanach raised $81,000, spent $64,000 and has $65,000 on hand. Meanwhile, Dallas County Democratic precinct chair Tom Ervin raised $27,000, spent $21,000 and has $33,000 left in his campaign account. 

Rep. Angie Chen Button (R-Richardson) HD-112

State Rep. Angie Chen Button outraised her 2018 Democrat challenger Brandy Chambers $275,000 to $87,000 in the last fundraising period. With $772,000, Button maintains the largest war chest of all of the incumbents in the top 10 vulnerable Republican-held districts. Chambers, meanwhile, maintains $72,000. 

Rep. Jeff Leach (R-Plano) HD-67

Chairman Jeff Leach outraised all three of his Democratic challengers combined with $220,000. He spent $131,000 and maintains a war chest of $403,000 heading into 2020. 

In the three-way Democratic primary for House District 67, attorney Tom Adair led in fundraising and spending with $43,000 and $33,000 respectively, and maintains the largest cash advantage thanks to his self-loan of $25,000. Rocio Gosewehr Hernandez raised $39,000, spent $27,000 and maintains $8,000, whereas Anthony Lo raised $8,000, spent $12,000 and maintains $9,000 heading into 2020.

Rep. Sarah Davis (R-West University Place) HD-134

Chairwoman Sarah Davis outraised her two Democratic opponents with $90,000. She also spent $76,000 and maintains a war chest of $231,000 heading into the election year.

In the three-way Democratic primary in House District 134, attorney Ann Johnson’s fundraising haul of $58,000 was just ahead of EdTech founder Lanny Bose’s $55,000. Not far behind was attorney Ruby Powers, who raised $43,000. While Johnson raised the most, Powers spent the most with $41,000. Johnson also leads with the most cash on hand with $148,000 in the new year. Meanwhile, Bose has $41,000 and Powers has $18,000.

Rep. Lynn Stucky (R-Denton) HD-64

State Rep. Lynn Stucky substantially outraised his Democratic challenger Angela Brewer with $165,000. He also outspent Brewer with $147,000 and maintains a war chest of $164,000.

Brewer raised $8,000, spent $7,000 and maintained $2,000.

Rep. Steve Allison (R-San Antonio) HD-121

Freshman state Rep. Steve Allison outraised his three Democratic opponents with $139,000. He also outspent them with $64,000 and has the biggest war chest going into 2020 with $139,000.

In the three-way Democratic primary for House District 121, returning challenger Celina Montoya led in fundraising and spending with $66,000 and $25,000 respectively. She has $40,000 in the bank going into 2020. Becca Moyer DeFelice raised $33,000, spent $8,000 and has maintained $16,000. Jack Guerra raised no money, spent $20,000 and has $2,000 on hand.

Open Seats

Rep. Dwayne Bohac (R-Houston) HD-138

In the race to replace Dwayne Bohac, the fundraising leaders were activist Lacey Hull in the Republican primary and attorney Josh Wallenstein in the Democratic primary. With $50,000, Hull has raised the most of the six candidates. Wallenstein is not far behind with a fundraising haul of $42,000. He also spent the most with $36,000 and has $52,000 in the bank going into 2020. Meanwhile, Hull has $46,000.

Former Harris County Board of Education Trustee and Republican Josh Flynn raised $12,000, spent $21,000 and has maintained $9,000. Radio host Claver Kamau-Imani raised $19,000, spent $2,000 and has maintained $17,000.

Attorney Akilah Bacy raised $28,000, spent $7,000 and maintained $14,000.

At the time of publication, there was no report available for Democrat primary candidate Jenifer Rene Pool.

Rep. Bill Zedler (R-Arlington) HD-96

David Cook, the Republican candidate who led to Bill Zedlers’ eleventh-hour retirement, raised an astonishing $145,000 in the half-month since he opened his campaign account. He has $319,000 in his war chest heading into 2020.

Democrat Joseph Drago raised $22,000, spent $14,000 and has maintained $18,000.

Rep. Rick Miller (R-Sugar Land) HD-26

Democrat Rish Oberoi led the fundraising pack in the last six months with $53,000 in donations and $47,000 in cash on hand. Oberoi faces three other Democrats in the primary, including Dr. Suleman Lalani, who raised $41,000 and loaned his campaign $90,000. Lalani has the biggest war chest heading into early voting with $91,000. State Board of Education member Lawrence Allen raised $21,000, and perennial candidate L. Sarah DeMerchant has raised $7,000.

With $26,000, Republican Jacey Jetton has raised the most amongst the three Republican candidates in the race. He also loaned his campaign $30,000 to help him have the second-largest cash on hand advantage of $55,000 — the highest amongst Republicans. Insurance consultant Matt Morgan raised no money, and analyst Leonard Chan raised $8,000.

Click here to check out the top 10 vulnerable Democrat-held house districts.

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