One of the most liberal Republicans in the Texas House is slated to face opposition in the upcoming primary elections, with multiple challengers entering the race.
State Rep. Travis Clardy (R–Nacogdoches) has represented East Texas’ House District 11 since 2013. During that time, Clardy has amassed one of the most liberal voting records among his Republican colleagues. During the most recent legislative session, Clardy earned a low score of 38 on the Fiscal Responsibility Index for his votes to grow government spending, as well as a score of 60 from Texas Right to Life.
Now his record has attracted competition in the upcoming election.
So far, three challengers have stepped forward to run against Clardy in the recently redrawn district.
Panola County candidate Mark Williams unsuccessfully ran in House District 9 against State Rep. Chris Paddie (R–Marshall) in 2020. When Paddie announced he would not seek re-election this year, his former district was absorbed into neighboring districts, including House District 11.
Greg Caldwell, a businessman from Nacogdoches, has also announced his intention to run against Clardy, citing his years of experience running both a construction company and an excavation company.
This week, the race received a third challenger in grassroots leader and small-business owner Rachel Hale of Henderson.
All three challengers have indicated they are challenging Clardy from the right, with each taking aim at his soft position on key conservative issues such as protecting life and fiscal responsibility, as well as the failure of the Legislature to fully address the priorities of the Republican Party of Texas.
The primary election date is currently scheduled for March 1, 2022.