Several Republican candidates secured their spots in the November general election during runoff elections last night.
First, in the closely watched contest for the Place 4 seat on the 7th Court of Appeals, incumbent appointee Larry Doss won the Republican nomination over Amarillo criminal defense attorney Steven Denny, 57-43 percent. Doss, a Lubbock resident, narrowly lost the March 3 primary to Denny, but a second election was ordered after it was discovered that two counties had failed to place this race on their ballots. In his second campaign, Doss touted endorsements from Gov. Greg Abbott, State Rep. John Smithee, State Sen. Charles Perry, and others. Doss was able to avenge his close loss by narrowing the score in the Amarillo area and handily carrying Lubbock.
In other important runoffs from the area, three counties selected their nominees for sheriff positions. In Hutchinson County, Blaik Kemp won his primary for sheriff with 59 percent, advancing to the general election after his runoff opponent, incumbent Kirk Coker, passed away prior to the election. Bruce Skidmore also won the runoff for sheriff in Roberts County with 55 percent, and Johnny Carter won the runoff for Wheeler County sheriff with 56 percent.
Outside of sheriff runoffs, Chris Rivera defeated Kevin Smith in Moore County to win the Republican nomination for tax collector, earning 54 percent of the vote.
According to the Texas Secretary of State’s website, of the Republicans who won runoffs in the Panhandle on Tuesday, only Johnny Carter will face a general election opponent in Democrat Julian Torres.