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Central Texas Boasts Many Legislative Races, Little Intrigue

The Travis County Clerk's office is looking to hire 100 people to staff the polls on Election Day.
Nathan Bernier
The Travis County Clerk's office is looking to hire 100 people to staff the polls on Election Day.

Republican Greg Abbott and Democrat Wendy Davis have criss-crossed the state and spent millions on who will be the state's next governor. But here in Central Texas, the local races for state office have left little to no intrigue.

Now, we're not the Associated Press; we're not calling races. And KUT doesn't endorse candidates. But, there are a number of races where, barring an upset of historic proportions, we already know who's going to win.

Here's a rundown of those races:

State House:

District 46 Rep. Dukes (D)
District 47 Rep. Workman(R)
District 48 Rep. Howard (D)
District 49 Rep. Naishtat (D)
District 51 Rep. Rodriguez (D)
District 52 Rep. Gonzales (R)
District 136 Rep. Dale (R)

Texas Senate:

District 5 Sen. Schwertner (R)
District 14 Sen. Watson (D)
District 21 Sen. Zaffirini (D)
District 24 Sen. Fraser (R)
District 25 Sen. Campbell (R)

U.S. House:

District 10 Rep. McCaul (R)
District 17 Rep. Flores (R)
District 21 Rep. Smith (R)
District 25 Rep. Williams (R)
District 31 Rep. Carter (R)
District 35 Rep. Doggett (D)

So what's left? Honestly, only State House District 50 in Northeast Travis County. Now, this race may not end up close, but there are reasons to think it could be. The incumbent is Democrat Celia Israel, who was elected to fill out retiring lawmaker Mark Strama's term after the 2013 legislative session ended. 

Her opponent is Republican Mike VanDeWalle. VanDeWalle lost to Israel in a runoff to fill that seat in January. But this district is drawn with more of a Republican/Democratic balance than others are. And with Republicans leading in all the state-wide races, their popularity could give VanDeWalle a boost.

Ben Philpott is the Managing Editor for KUT. Got a tip? Email him at Follow him on Twitter @BenPhilpottKUT.
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