Despite a constant barrage of attacks from Democrats and establishment Republicans, Attorney General Ken Paxton is leading his GOP runoff challenger George P. Bush ahead of the May 24 election. A new poll from the Defend Texas Liberty PAC shows Paxton receiving 59 percent of the Republican vote statewide, compared to 30 percent for Bush.

Paxton was challenged in the March 1 Republican primary by three opponents, forcing him into the runoff. Paxton received 43 percent of the vote in the primary, with second-place finisher Bush receiving 23 percent. Former Supreme Court Justice Eva Guzman—who was supported by the Austin lobbying team at Texas for Lawsuit Reform—finished third, followed by retiring U.S. Rep. Louie Gohmert.

After the poll was announced, Paxton’s campaign released a statement saying the results were evidence that Bush “doesn’t share [Texans’] conservative values, nor are they convinced he has the experience or willingness to defend our state from the Left’s radical assault on our state.”

“Texas cannot afford to have an establishment-supported rookie in the attorney general’s office who lacks the fortitude and knowledge necessary to win the battles at the highest level,” added Paxton.

The poll also shows incumbent Railroad Commissioner Wayne Christian with a 26 percent lead over his opponent, Sarah Stogner. In the open-seat race for land commissioner, Dawn Buckingham has a 24 percent lead over Tim Westley.

The Defend Texas Liberty PAC is helmed by former State Rep. Jonathan Stickland. The poll was conducted between March 29, 2022, and April 2, 2022.

“Our poll also shows Texas voters are hungry for conservative leadership,” said Stickland in a statement. “There is strong support for Donald Trump should he decide to run for president again. Ron DeSantis is the clear second choice in any other scenario, and there is even stronger support for Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick’s plan to review tenure for liberal professors teaching critical race theory. It is clear that Texas Republicans want a bold conservative future for our state.”

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