Voters across West Texas made their voices heard in contested primary elections on Tuesday night, setting the landscape for the upcoming November elections. Here is a look at some of the highlights of Tuesday night’s election and who will be moving on to the November ballot.

Regional Elections

For West Texas’ biggest race in terms of district size, voters elected Aaron Kinsey to be the next State Board of Education member of Texas’ 15th District, which encompasses Amarillo, Lubbock, Midland, Odessa, Abilene, and Wichita Falls.

Kinsey defeated incumbent Dr. Jay Johnson on Tuesday night with 52 percent of the vote. Johnson, a former Pampa ISD trustee, was seeking a second term in office after voters elected him to the seat in 2020. Kinsey, an Air Force combat veteran whose campaign was built around his opposition to critical race theory, was a first-time candidate.

For state House races, voters re-elected incumbents in three West Texas contests and sent two newcomers to a runoff to decide an open seat in Lubbock County.

In the race for Texas House District 81, voters re-elected embattled State Rep. Brooks Landgraf to another two years in office. On Wednesday morning, Landgraf was the projected winner of the race with 80 percent of the vote over his opponent, Casey Gray.

For Texas House District 83, State Rep. Dustin Burrows was re-elected to another term in office, defeating pig farmer Austin Jordan with 83 percent of the vote.

In the race for House District 84, attorney David Glasheen and former Lubbock County Republican chairman Carl Tepper earned their spots in a runoff election to replace retiring Rep. John Frullo. Glasheen led the pack on Tuesday night with 42 percent of the vote, followed by Tepper with 40 percent. Kade Wilcox and Cheryl Little rounded out the field with 13 percent and 5 percent, respectively.

Finally, in the race for Texas House District 88, State Rep. Ken King won a competitive race for another term in office representing the rural Panhandle district. King won 65 percent of the vote against Pampa Economic Development Corporation board member Ted Hutto, who won 35 percent of the vote.

Lubbock County

In Lubbock County, voters ousted two incumbents and sent a few other races to runoffs.

For county judge, incumbent Curtis Parrish narrowly won another term in office over former Lubbock City Councilman Gary Boren with 52 percent of the vote.

In the race for county commissioner in Lubbock’s Precinct 4, farmer Jordan Rackler ousted incumbent Commissioner Chad W. Seay with 51 percent of the vote.

In the 72nd District judge race, which included voters from Lubbock and Crosby counties, voters ousted appointed incumbent Ann-Marie Carruth, who was running to serve the remainder of the unexpired term for the seat. Carruth lost the seat to John Grace, who won 53 percent of the vote.

For Lubbock County’s second court-at-law bench, voters advanced two candidates to a May runoff election. Tom Brummett and Bob Nebb punched their tickets to the runoff on Tuesday, winning 43 percent and 41 percent, respectively. A third candidate in the race, Chris Wanner, missed the runoff with 16 percent of the vote.

Voters also re-elected Precinct 4 Justice of the Peace Lance Cansino with 53 percent of the vote over challenger T.J. McAuley’s 47 percent.

Midland County

Voters in Midland County re-elected County Judge Terry Johnson on Tuesday night with 66 percent of the vote over challenger Joanna Smoot. Additionally, voters elected Jeff Somers to the county’s Precinct 2 commissioner seat with 64 percent of the vote over incumbent Robin Donnelly, who won 36 percent of the vote.

Precinct 4 will also be seeing a runoff for county commissioner, with incumbent Randy Prude set to face Dianne Anderson in a second round of voting. Anderson won 41 percent of the vote to Prude’s 34 percent, while a third candidate in the race, Charles Hall, won 25 percent.

For county treasurer, Midland voters gave the nod to Sara R. Gray, who won 63 percent of the vote. Gray, a City of Midland employee, defeated chief deputy treasurer Mary Ann Espinoza, who won 37 percent of the vote.

In the race for the county’s first court-at-law bench, Mark Henry Dettman won the support of voters with 58 percent of the vote over opponent Cassandra Moholt Cheek.

For the 238th District Court, voters in Midland gave incumbent Elizabeth Byer Leonard another term in office with 70 percent of the vote over challenger Christopher Deanda.

Ector County

Starting with the race for county judge, voters in Ector County ousted incumbent Debi Hays in favor of newcomer Dustin Fawcett. Fawcett won 57 percent of the vote against Hays’ 43 percent. While voters made a change in that race, they did keep a familiar face on the county commission in Precinct 2, re-electing Commissioner Greg Simmons to another term in office with 54 percent over challengers Ryan Patton and Billy Tripp, who received 24 percent and 22 percent, respectively.

For district clerk, incumbent Clarissa Webster earned another term in office with 62 percent of the vote over challenger Chris Bryson, who won 38 percent.

In the Precinct 1 and Precinct 2 justice of the peace races, voters re-elected incumbents to another term in office. In Precinct 1, incumbent Terry Lange won 57 percent of the vote, fighting back a challenge from Melissa Gonzales and Steven Brennan. In Precinct 2, incumbent Missi Walden received 50 percent of the vote, avoiding a runoff against challengers Ron Hughes and Cynthia Moreno, who received 32 percent and 18 percent, respectively.

For the Precinct 3 justice of the peace race, Bill Bowen won the nod from voters to replace the retiring incumbent, Woody Kupper. Bowen received 57 percent of the vote against Freddy Redmon and Murle Graham, who received 30 percent and 13 percent, respectively.

In the race for the 244th District Court bench, voters sent Cindy Weir-Nutter and Lori Ruiz-Crutcher to a runoff to replace retiring judge James Rush. Weir-Nutter received 45 percent of the vote against Ruiz-Crutcher’s 32 percent. The third candidate in the race, Dennis Jones, received 23 percent of the vote.

Gray County

In Gray County, voters re-elected Precinct 2 commissioner William Lake Arrington to another term in office over challenger Solomon Cruz. Arrington received 64 percent of the vote to Cruz’ 36 percent.

Voters also gave the nod to Elaine Morris to serve as the county’s next treasurer. Morris received 64 percent of the vote over opponent Barbara Hahn’s 36 percent.

Voters will decide all runoff elections on Tuesday, May 24.

Thomas Warren

Thomas Warren, III is the editor-in-chief of the Amarillo Pioneer newspaper in Amarillo, Texas.


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