Beth Van Duyne won Tuesday’s contested Republican primary for the 24th Congressional District in North Texas, besting four other candidates in the race with 64 percent of the vote.
Van Duyne was endorsed by President Donald Trump.
The former Irving mayor and Trump administration official was one of five candidates in the race for the open seat vacated by retiring Republican incumbent Kenny Marchant.
“Last night’s victory proves that folks are united behind our message of solutions over petty politics,” Van Duyne said in a Facebook message to supporters following her win:
“It will take our best collective effort to stop the rise of socialism the democrats are embracing. Instead of the attack at all costs politics we see today, we will concentrate on what is important like job growth, lowering the cost of health care, securing the border and supporting our military.”
As mayor of Irving from 2011 to 2017, Van Duyne reined in out-of-control city spending and property taxes and implemented policies to increase transparency and accountability. She opposed sanctuary city policies that sheltered criminal illegal aliens and worked with law enforcement to reduce crime in the city.
She also fought back against a defamation lawsuit filed in 2015 by the father of “clock boy” Ahmed Mohamed after she refused his demand for $10 million from the city. The lawsuit was later dismissed.
In 2017, Trump appointed Van Duyne to serve as regional administrator for the Fort Worth office of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. She left that position in August of last year to run for Congress.
As the only candidate in the race with political experience, Van Duyne was seen as the front-runner. David Fegan, a Colleyville activist who works in commercial real estate, came in a distant second with 20 percent of the vote. Desi Maes, Sunny Chaparala, and Jeron Liverman each drew less than 6 percent.
CD 24 centers on the Dallas-Tarrant county line and includes the cities of Addison, Carrollton, Coppell, Farmers Branch, and Irving in Dallas County; Bedford, Colleyville, Euless, Grapevine, Hurst, and Southlake in Tarrant County; and DFW International Airport.
Though eight-term incumbent Marchant won in 2018 with just 51 percent of the vote, the district is still considered reliably Republican, and Van Duyne is expected to win the general election.
She will face off in November against the winner of the Democrat primary runoff, either Kim Olson or Candace Valenzuela.
Until then, Van Duyne asked her supporters to stay engaged and help her “create a Congress that is working for the American people instead of against them.”