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2022 Texas Primary Election: Live Updates

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The first 2022 midterm primaries in Texas, headlined by a fiery Republican scramble in the race for attorney general, are poised to ripple through both parties and set the stage for the November elections that could swing control of Congress back to the Republicans.

But even as the results start to trickle in, Texas will share the spotlight with President Biden’s State of the Union address on Capitol Hill and the rapidly escalating crisis in Ukraine, where invading Russian forces are move to the major cities of the country.

Russian President Vladimir Putin’s troops were camped on the Ukrainian border when early voting began in Texas on February 14, and while the dispute appears unlikely to influence Tuesday night’s election, rapid events at home and abroad abroad highlight the challenges facing candidates as the 2022 midterms begin in earnest.

Tuesday’s banner contest revolves around Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton. The two-term incumbent, who filed an unsuccessful lawsuit to effectively nullify the 2020 election, comes under a cloud of legal trouble, with the possibility of more on the horizon, which his GOP opponents say could jeopardize GOP efforts at this time. sweep offices across the state again.

A recent poll shows Paxton with a commanding lead in the four-way primary, but he’s likely to fall short of the majority needed to clinch the nomination, which would send the race to a second round. The big question now: If Paxton doesn’t reach the threshold, which of his opponents — all esteemed candidates with large followings and significant resources — will move on to a potential all-around at the end of May?

The narrow favorite to secure a spring date with Paxton is Texas Lands Commissioner George P. Bush, the latest in a political dynasty that, even with the Republican Party now in thrall to former President Trump, retains considerable stature in Texas political circles.

Like Bush, former Texas Supreme Court Justice Eva Guzman, who spent more than a decade on the state’s high court, is relatively moderate. The two clashed in a recent debate, in which Guzman questioned Bush’s credentials and Bush denounced Guzman as a “gutter politician.” The candidacy of U.S. Representative Louie Gohmert, whose ideological and geographic base overlaps that of Paxton, is of more concern to Paxton, at least as this first primary round unfolds.

The gubernatorial primaries offer less drama. Two-term Republican incumbent Governor Greg Abbott is well-positioned to take on a crowded field of GOP challengers and Democrat Beto O’Rourke, a former congressman and Senate and presidential candidate, is the heavy favorite to win. the Democratic nomination.

Above all that, however, are concerns — at least among Democrats and suffrage advocates — about the effect of the state’s restrictive new voting rules.

Texas will be the first of a number of Republican-led states to hold major elections after passing legislation, following a political wave sparked by Trump’s long campaign to cast doubt over his loss. in 2020, making it more difficult to vote by mail and prohibiting other efforts to make the ballot more accessible. Some large counties in Texas have already reported spikes in ballot rejections because potential voters failed to meet new, tougher and, for many, confusing ID requirements.

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