Greg Casar wins Democratic nomination for Congressional District 35; GOP candidates to runoff

Austin’s Greg Casar wins Democratic nod and Dan McQueen, Michael Rodriguez to GOP runoff

(Lauren Witte/The Texas Tribune, Lauren Witte/The Texas Tribune)

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Candidate

Votes

%

Dan McQueen(R)
2,86821%
Michael Rodriguez(R)
2,03015%
Bill Condict(R)
1,51511%
Marilyn Jackson(R)
1,46711%
Dan Sawatzki(R)
1,40710%
Jennifer Sundt(R)
1,29110%
Sam Montoya(R)
1,2249%
Alejandro Ledezma(R)
8306%
Jenai Aragona(R)
5874%
Asa George Kent Palagi(R)
3242%
100% of Precincts Reporting

(254 / 254)

Candidate

Votes

%

Greg Casar(D)
25,30661%
Eddie Rodriguez(D)
6,43316%
Rebecca Viagran(D)
6,41216%
Carla-Joy Sisco(D)
3,1618%
100% of Precincts Reporting

(254 / 254)

Election night update

1:20 a.m. update - Progressive Austin City Council Member Greg Casar cruised to victory in the Democratic primary for Congressional District 35.

Casar faced opposition from State Rep. Eddie Rodriguez, but Rodriguez only won 17% of the vote, while former San Antonio City Council member Rebecca Viagran came in third with 16% of the vote.

Casar also won among Bexar County voters within the district, pulling in 45%.

Ten candidates sought the Republican nomination in the district. Former Corpus Christi Mayor Dan McQueen led the way with 21% of the vote, with Michael Rodriguez trailing behind with 14% of the vote, resulting in a runoff between the two.

The district, which spans from Austin to San Antonio, is reliably Democratic. The seat opened up after Congressman Lloyd Doggett, who previously represented CD-35, opted to run for Congressional District 37 after redistricting took shape.

8:35 p.m. — Austin City Council member Greg Casar has a big lead over his opponents in the Democratic primary for Texas Congressional District.

With 40 precincts reporting — about 16% of the vote — Casar garnered 13,560 votes, amounting to 60%. State Rep. Eddie Rodriguez, in second place with 17% has a one-point lead over San Antonio City Council member Rebecca Viagran.

On the Republican ticket, former Corpus Christi Mayor Dan McQueen has a narrow lead in that race, which features 10 candidates. McQueen has 1,519 votes, amounting to 22%.

If the results hold, Casar will avoid a runoff in May and win the Democratic nomination. He has reportedly already declared victory, though the race has not been formally called yet.

If Republican candidates are unable to come away with more than 50% of the vote, the top two contenders will go head-to-head in a runoff on May 24.

Background

Two frontrunners have emerged in the Democratic primary for Texas Congressional District 35, a district that spans from Austin to San Antonio.

With U.S. Rep. Lloyd Doggett choosing to seek one of the new congressional seats created in Texas through redistricting, the reliably Democratic district is up for grabs.

Former Austin City Councilman Greg Casar has the fundraising advantage over his opponents, bringing in more than $467,000 in contributions over a two-month span between October and December. He has also racked up endorsements from nationally-known liberal figures, like Sen. Bernie Sanders and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.

But State Rep. Eddie Rodriguez has set himself up as an alternative to Casar, attacking him for his voting record on homelessness while serving on the Austin City Council.

Rodriguez has brought in more than $250,000 in contributions in the race.

Though this race has attracted a number of Republican challengers, the winner of the Democratic primary will be heavily favored in the November general election.

Another familiar name vying for the nomination is former San Antonio City Councilwoman Rebecca Viagran. She trails behind Casar and Rodriguez, reporting only $47,000 in campaign contributions.

Republican candidates:

  • Dan McQueen
  • Marilyn Jackson
  • Alejandro Ledezma
  • Dan Sawatzki
  • Sam Montoya
  • Jenai Aragona
  • Asa George Kent Palagi
  • Michael Rodriguez
  • Jennifer Sundt
  • Bill Condict

If the candidates are unable to win more than 50% of the vote on March 1, the primary would be decided by a runoff between the top two contenders.

Congressional District 35 (KSAT)

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About the Authors:

David Ibañez has been managing editor of KSAT.com since the website's launch in October 2000.

Kolten Parker is digital executive producer at KSAT. Previously, he worked at the San Antonio Express-News and the Texas Observer.