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Politics

Hays County: 2022 Primary Elections Voter Guide

A voter heads to a polling location in the Travis Heights neighborhood of Austin on Election Day.
Gabriel C. Pérez
/
KUT

Lee esta historia en español.

It's primary season in Texas. Republicans and Democrats across the state will decide who their party's nominee will be in the November general election. Election Day is Tuesday, March 1, and early voting for the primaries runs from Monday, Feb. 14, through Friday, Feb. 25.

Runoff elections can take place between the top candidates if no one reaches a 50% majority of the vote.

If you don't find your districts listed below, that means they're not up for election in 2022. You can also jump to congressional, statewide, state legislative and county races.

Find races for Travis County here, and Williamson County here.

* Indicates incumbent

Federal

U.S. House of Representatives

Texas has 38 seats in the House of Representatives, the lower chamber of Congress. The total number of representatives is set at 435. Each state is given a number of representatives based on population. Texas gained two seats after the 2020 census. Representatives are elected for two-year terms.

District 21 takes up the whole of Hays and Blanco counties and a portion of southern Travis County before it reaches down to parts of San Antonio. U.S. Rep. Chip Roy has held the seat since 2018.

District 35 includes East Austin and Manor, then a sliver of the district runs down along I-35 through parts of San Marcos and New Braunfels before ending in San Antonio. Lloyd Doggett, the current representative, decided against running for re-election and is instead running to represent Texas’ newly added 37th Congressional District. Former Austin City Council Member Greg Casar is running for election in this district, along with Austin-area state Rep. Eddie Rodriguez.

Statewide

Governor: The governor is the head of Texas’ executive and legislative branch. Gov. Greg Abbott, a Republican who was first elected in 2014, is running for his third term in office. In this primary, Abbott is facing seven Republican challengers — including former state Sen. Don Huffines, former Texas GOP Chairman Allen West, and a man named Rick Perry (who isn’t the state’s former governor). Five people are competing for the Democratic gubernatorial nomination, including Beto O’Rourke. The former congressman from El Paso made a notable run for U.S. Senate in 2018 and ran for president in 2020.

Lieutenant governor: While this is the state’s second-highest executive office, some would argue it’s the most powerful. The lieutenant governor presides over the Texas Senate and is elected every four years. Dan Patrick has held the position since 2015 and is seeking a third term. Five other Republicans are challenging Patrick, who made national headlines at the beginning of the pandemic for suggesting grandparents would be willing to sacrifice themselves to save the economy. There are three candidates on the Democratic side, including Mike Collier. He was also the party’s nominee for lieutenant governor in 2018.

Attorney general: Texas’ attorney general is the state’s top lawyer whose office provides legal counsel and representation to the state. Incumbent Republican Ken Paxton is running for a third term. In 2015, Paxton was indicted on three felony charges related to securities fraud violations, but has not yet gone to trial. The AG is also reportedly under investigation by the FBI after former aides accused him of taking bribes. Those issues are being brought up by Paxton’s three challengers in the Republican primary — former land Commissioner George P. Bush, U.S. Rep. Louie Gohmert and former Texas Supreme Court Justice Eva Guzman. Five Democrats are also vying for a place on the November ballot.

Comptroller of public accounts: As Texas’ chief financial officer, the comptroller is in charge of collecting taxes and coming up with the budget estimate for the state. Glenn Hegar has held the office since 2015 and is seeking a third term. Three people are running for the Democratic Party’s nomination.

Commissioner of the general land office: Texas’ land commissioner is responsible for managing public lands in the state. Land revenues are used for veteran programs and watching the state’s coastline. Current Commissioner George P. Bush is running for attorney general, which has left eight Republicans and four Democrats vying for the position.

Commissioner of agriculture: The commissioner is in charge of the Texas Department of Agriculture, which oversees things such as proper pesticide use, organic certification, aid to Texas farmers and ensuring food is weighed properly. Incumbent Sid Miller was elected in 2014 and is seeking his third re-election against two other Republicans; two Democrats are running for the nomination.

Railroad commissioner: Don’t let the name fool you; Texas’ railroad commissioner doesn’t have anything to do with railroads. The three-member commission actually oversees the state’s oil and gas industries. Commissioners hold their positions for six-year terms. These are staggered so there’s an election for at least one spot on the ballot every two years. One seat is up for grabs this year. Republican incumbent Wayne Christian faces several challengers in his fight for a second term. A candidate from Lubbock, Marvin “Sarge” Summers, died in a car crash in early February, but his name will still appear on the ballot. Whoever wins the primary will face Democrat Luke Warford, who is running unopposed.

Texas Supreme Court: Texas’ Supreme Court is the final resort for civil and juvenile cases in the state. The court includes eight justices and one chief justice. Each is elected to a six-year term. The governor can appoint a new justice if one steps down before their term ends. There are three seats on the court up for election this year, and only one race is competitive in the primary.

Supreme Court Justice, Place 3:

Supreme Court Justice, Place 5:

Supreme Court Justice, Place 9:

Court of Criminal Appeals: Texas’ Court of Criminal Appeals is the highest court for criminal cases. The court includes nine judges, each elected to six-year terms. There are three races this year, but Place 2 Judge Mary Lou Keel, a Republican, is running unopposed.

Court of Criminal Appeals Place 2 Judge:

Court of Criminal Appeals Place 5 Judge:
REPUBLICANS: Clint Morgan, Scott Walker*
DEMOCRATS: Dana Huffman

Court of Criminal Appeals Place 6 Judge:

State Board of Education: Members of the State Board of Education are responsible for setting Texas public school curriculum and graduation requirements, along with overseeing Texas’ Permanent School Fund. The 15 board members represent different districts across the state.

State Board of Education Member District 5: District 5 includes all of Travis, Hays, Bastrop, Caldwell and Blanco counties and a smidge of southern Williamson County.

Texas Legislature

Texas House of Representatives

The Texas House is the lower chamber of the state Legislature. It consists of 150 members, who are elected every two years. Along with the state Senate, the House drafts and passes state laws, policies and budgets. The Legislature meets for 140 days during odd-numbered years, though the governor can call special sessions outside that time frame as he did three times during 2021.

District 45 includes all major cities in Hays County and some parts of Blanco County.

Texas Senate 

This is the upper chamber of the Texas Legislature. It consists of 31 members, each representing about 940,000 Texans. They are elected to four-year terms. Along with the Texas House of Representatives, the Texas Senate drafts and passes state laws, policies and budgets. The Legislature meets for 140 days during odd-numbered years, though the governor can call special sessions outside that time frame as he did three times during 2021.

District 21 runs from the southeastern part of Travis County down through the Rio Grande Valley.

District 25 extends from western Travis County through Blanco and Hays counties and goes down through New Braunfels and part of San Antonio.

County

County judge: A county judge presides over commissioners court, the body that drafts and passes policies for the county. They also prepare the yearly budget and oversee all county departments.

Hays County commissioners: County commissioners draft and pass policies for the county, much like city council members do for a city. There are four county commissioners in Hays County, plus the county judge, who is elected countywide. Three seats on the commission are up for election this year.

Precinct 2 includes parts of eastern Buda and extends down to Kyle.

Precinct 4 extends west from Buda through the topmost half of the county.

County clerk: The County Clerk records the minutes of all Commissioners Court meetings and maintains public records and county court records.

County treasurer: The county treasurer serves as a custodian for all the county's money. They also keep receipt of the county's revenue, investments and disbursements.

County court: County courts oversee cases involving adult criminal misdemeanors, juvenile offenders, guardianship and mental health.

Judge, County Court-at-Law #1

Judge, County Court-at-Law #2

Judge, County Court-at-Law #3,

District judges: District courts have county wide geographical jurisdiction, and the district judges are elected countywide to four-year terms. District courts are trial courts of general subject-matter jurisdiction. They hear felony criminal prosecutions, suits for divorce, election contests, juvenile cases, and civil suits with an amount in controversy of at least $200 with no ceiling.

207th Judicial District

274th Judicial District

428th Judicial District

District clerk: the District Clerk provides and manages all records of District Courts proceedings. They support district courts and judges. District courts are trial courts of general subject-matter jurisdiction. They hear felony criminal prosecutions, suits for divorce, election contests, juvenile cases, and civil suits with an amount in controversy of at least $200 with no ceiling.

Hays County criminal district attorney: The responsibilities of the district attorney include prosecuting felony crimes and assisting law enforcement with investigations.

Justices of the peace: Justices of the peace preside over small claims court and hear cases regarding traffic, truancy, and minor alcohol and tobacco violations. They can also issue warrants, set bonds and perform marriages.

Precinct 1, Place 2

Precinct 2

  • DEMOCRATS: Beth Smith*, Amaya Cuellar
  • REPUBLICANS: None 

Precinct 3

Precinct 4

Precinct 5

  • DEMOCRATS: Sandra Bryant
  • REPUBLICANS: Karen Marshall, Terry Strawn
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