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30 Day Out Fundraising Reports Roundup: State House, Districts 1 - 50


by: Joseph Vogas

Wed Feb 12, 2014 at 10:00 AM CST



Per Texas law, candidates for state office must file fundraising reports every six months. Additionally, any candidate in a contested election must file an additional fundraising report that reflects their holdings thirty days before voting begins in that election. Candidates in contested primaries had to file reports by February 3 which reflected how much money they raised between January 1 and January 23 as well as how much cash they have remaining on hand. With in-person voting starting next week, these fundraising reports could provide helpful clues on who is favored to win their party's nomination.

This week, Burnt Orange Report will look at all statewide primaries and all legislative primaries that feature an incumbent or seats that could be considered competitive come November's general election.

In our third installment, we will look at the contested primaries for the Texas House. Due to the large number of districts, the Texas House review will be broken down in three articles, each focusing on a block of fifty House seats. Today's section will include Districts 1 - 50 which are primarily centered in East, Coastal, and South Texas. In this section, we look at the primary challenges to Republican Reps. Lavender, Leach, Schaefer, Cook, Clardy, Kacal, and Otto, as well as Democratic Rep. Muñoz, and the Republican primary to replace retiring Democrat Craig Eiland. All fundraising reports were pulled from the website of the Texas Ethics Commission.

Readers can always go back and review Burnt Orange Report's previous Fundraising Roundups:
-Statewide Primaries
-Texas State Senate Primaries

Full analysis and race-by-race rundown of contested statewide primaries can be found after the jump.

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In the tables, "Raised since '13" represents the amount of money a candidate raised from January 1 to January 23. "EoY 2013 CoH" represents how much money a candidate retained in their bank account on December 31, 2013. "Current CoH" represents how much money a candidate had remaining in their bank account on January 23, 2014. "CoH" is shorthand for "Cash on Hand."

HD-1 (R)
Candidate Raised Since '13 EoY 2013 CoH Current CoH
G. Lavender $5,400 $100,373 $80,058
G. Vandeaver $5,000 $9,389 $10,951

Two-term incumbent George Lavender is facing a primary from New Boston school superintendent Gary VanDeaver. Lavender and VanDeaver kept pace in January with Lavender raising $5,400 and VanDeaver pulling in a comparable $5,000. Cash on hand is making all of the difference in this race. Lavender ended 2013 with more than ten times cash on hand than VanDeaver. In January, Lavender has shed twenty percent of his holdings while VanDeaver's bank account has slightly increased. Prediction: Lavender's cash on hand makes him the favorite, but VanDeaver's consistent fundraising in January is keeping the chance of an upset possible.

HD-4 (R)
Candidate Raised Since '13 EoY 2013 CoH Current CoH
L. Gooden $23,725 $77,139 $51,189
S. Spitzer $350 $22,347 $7,583

Doctor Stuart Spitzer is giving Rep. Lance Gooden a nice challenge in District 4. However, any momentum he had in 2013 was wiped away in January when Gooden pulled in an addition $23,725 for his re-election. Gooden had three times the cash on hand as Spitzer in 2013, but Gooden's January haul has meant his bank account will remain in much better shape going into the final month. Prediction: The incumbent is bringing in a lot of late money, fast. When the incumbent only has a three time cash on hand advantage, it is a race. The only thing that may Gooden an edge is Spitzer taking his foot off the fundraising gas in January.

HD-6 (R)
Candidate Raised Since '13 EoY 2013 CoH Current CoH
M. Schaefer $24,255 $57,326 $44,100
S. Ogle $56,175 $50,956 $28,368

If there is a true toss up for an incumbent seeking re-election to the Texas House, this is the district. Lobbyist Skip Ogle raised twice what Rep. Schaefer did in January and both have similar cash on hand quantities for December and January, although Ogle appears to be burning through his cash reserves faster. Prediction: This one is too close to call. Rep. Schaefer has the reputation as a movement conservative and his district is in the hyper-conservative town of Tyler. That and Mr. Ogle's history as a lobbyist may deliver re-nomination to Rep. Schaefer. But, this one is still too close to call.

HD-8 (R)

Candidate Raised Since '13 EoY 2013 CoH Current CoH
B. Cook $22,000 $640,503 $639,039
C. Morgan $0 $0 $0
B. Vickery $4,263 $6,506 $5,974

Incumbent Byron Cook is in fine shape to be re-nominated in March. He raised $22,000 in January and has over $600,000 in his campaign account. His opponents are not having any fundraising success. Charles Morgan has raised nothing and Bobby Vickery has raised and maintains close to $5,000. Prediction: This will not be close. Rep. Cook will skate to re-nomination in March easily avoiding an April runoff.

HD-11 (R)
Candidate Raised Since '13 EoY 2013 CoH Current CoH
T. Clardy $24,906 $51,942 $85,701
T. Sevilla $300 $0 $125

Rep. Travis Clardy is also doing well as he prepares for re-election. His primary challenger, Tony Sevilla, is near broke and is not actively fundraising. Rep. Clardy meanwhile is raising well, has plenty of cash on hand, and even gave his own campaign a $60,000 infusion from himself just to make sure. Prediction: Another race that will not be close. Rep. Clardy will be re-nominated.

HD-12 (R)
Candidate Raised Since '13 EoY 2013 CoH Current CoH
K. Kacal $6,400 $51,942 $55,495
T. Delasandro $4,007 $1,163 $2,210

Freshman Rep. Kyle Kacal had received low scores earlier in the year from Michael Quinn Sullivan's Empower Texans and a strong primary challenger was expected. Instead, Timothy Delasandro filed to challenge in the Republican primary. Delasandro is not weak in fundraising, but he will need much more to take on Rep. Kacal's current bank account. Kacal has twenty-five times the amount of cash in his campaign's bank account as Delasandro's and he will use it to secure re-nomination. Prediction: Rep. Kacal may not have endeared himself to the voters of District 12 yet, and Delasandro is taking in enough cash to be a bump in the road, but not enough to beat the incumbent. I expect Kacal will win re-nomination by a healthy margin.

HD-18 (R)
Candidate Raised Since '13 EoY 2013 CoH Current CoH
J. Otto $73,674 $531,510 $530,460
T. Holcomb $2,995 $2,013 $1,414

Rep. John Otto is ready to blow Preacher Terry Holcomb out of the water in March. Otto has half a million in his bank account, which compared to Mr. Holbomb's $1,414 is way more than enough to secure re-nomination. Prediction: Rep. Otto wins, easily.

HD-23 (R)
Candidate Raised Since '13 EoY 2013 CoH Current CoH
W. Faircloth $2,125 $25,385 $19,092
B. Senter $4,575 $35,934 $13,865

This is the seat of retiring Democrat Craig Eiland of Galveston. It is also the only seat in the Texas House that has a Representative of a party different than how it voted for President, meaning in 2012 Rep. Eiland secured re-election in a district that was carried by Gov. Mitt Romney. Because there is no incumbent and the district has a natural lean towards conservatives, Republicans view this seat as their best chance to take a seat from the Democrats this fall. Wayne Faircloth was the 2012 nominee against and is back again. The other Republican running this year is Bob Senter. Both men are insurance salesmen. In January, Mr. Senter raised twice as much as Mr. Faircloth but after January maintains less in his bank account. Both have donated heavily to their own campaigns with Senter giving himself $25,000 and Faircloth giving himself $30,000. Prediction: This one is close, but a closer look at their financial reports shows Mr. Senter is spending his money more wisely; polling, strategists, and voter contact. Faircloth may have greater name recognition from 2012, but I would bet on Senter for the 2014 nomination. Whoever wins will face the financial buzz saw of Democrat and former Galveston County Judge Susan Criss, who reported raising $112,545, only in the month of December.

HD-36 (D)
Candidate Raised Since '13 EoY 2013 CoH Current CoH
S. Muñoz, Jr. $7,200 $189,450 $187,901
M. Regalado $2,300 $1,174 $1,018

Rep. Muñoz is one of a handful of Democrats who supported the anti-choice HB2 and the only one who is getting a primary challenger as a direct result of that vote. However, Maria Regalado is coming up short in fundraising. A third candidate, Dolly Elizondo, was rumored to enter the race but may have declined when she learned of Rep. Muñoz's financial war chest. His $187,901 is nothing to take lightly and is overwhelming when compared to Ms. Regalado's $1,018. Prediction: Rep. Muñoz will be handily renominated.

You can review all the candidates running for office in Texas at our Burnt Orange Report Candidate Trackers:

- Statewide Offices
- US Congress
- Texas Senate
- Texas House
- State Board of Education

You can follow me on Twitter at @trowaman.



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Do not republish without express written permission.


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