2008 Primary Runoff Results (liveblog)

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Updates Final



100% of precincts reporting

Dale Henry             81,107   40.83%

Mark Thompson    117,496   59.16% (WINNER)


100% of precincts reporting

Steve Love            749      27.47%

Eric Roberson     1,977      72.52% (WINNER)


100% of precincts reporting

Mindy Montford           10,243   34.79%

Rosemary Lehmberg   19,197   65.21% (WINNER: Montford concedes)


100% of precincts reporting

Janie Serna         1,009    28.54%

Danny Thomas    2,524    71.46% (WINNER)


100% of precincts reporting

Diana L. Lackey       5,201      46.75 %

John R. Ames          5,924      53.25 % (WINNER)


100% of precincts reporting

Amadeo Ortiz            7,155    66.55% (WINNER)    

Andy Lopez               3,596    33.45%


Richard Wiles      14,784      60.61% (WINNER)

Carlos Leon           9,608      39.39%



100% of precincts reporting

Pete Olson                15,492     68.51% (WINNER)

Shelley Sekula Gibbs   7,118     31.48%


100% of precincts reporting

Bryan Daniel     1,656     53.62% (WINNER)

Dee Hobbs        1,432     46.37%


100% reporting

Ralph Sheffield        4,202     63.50% (WINNER)

Martha Tyroch        2,415      36.49%


100% reporting

Tryon D. Lewis                   5,171    76.02% (WINNER- defeats incumbent)

G.E. “Buddy” West (i)        1,631     23.97%


100% of precincts reporting

Angie Chen Button       3,103     53.17% (WINNER)

Randy Dunning            2,732     46.82%


100% of precincts reporting

Ken Legler           1,590      51.64% (WINNER)

Fred Roberts        1,489      48.35%Statement from Vince Leibowitz, Campaign Director, Dale Henry for Texas Railroad Commission:

“While the results are not what we had hoped for, Dale is very appreciative of the support he has received throughout this election cycle, and in today's election.”

“I believe, in 2010, when Democrats elect a candidate in the Democratic Primary who can defeat an incumbent Railroad Commissioner, they will have Dale Henry to thank for igniting the debate–this year and in 2006–that will fuel that race. Without Dale and his experience and efforts, this race would not have made the headlines it has. Texas Democrats owe a debt of gratitude to Dale Henry for his efforts on behalf of the people of Texas.

“To Dale's supporters around the state, he extends a resounding 'thank you.' He and Ruth are, as always, humbled by the support they have continuously received from grassroots Democrats across Texas.”

“For me personally, it has been an honor and a privilege to work for a candidate who has so much knowledge about the office he was seeking. Dale is truly one-of-a-kind, and a decent and honorable man whom I believe Texans would have been proud to call their Railroad Commissioner.”

Lampson for Congress campaign manager Anthony Gutierrez issued the following statement tonight regarding the results of the CD22 Republican primary runoff:

“Congressman Lampson has promoted NASA while his opponent didn't know the name of the Johnson Space Center in a recent debate.  He has worked on transportation issues while his opponent supports more toll roads and a big government land grab called the Trans-Texas Corridor.  And he has worked for affordable health care while his opponent opposes the State Children's Health Insurance Program.  Congressman Lampson is an independent voice for Texas.  His opponent is a Washington insider with little or no knowledge of this district.”

About Author

Former Publisher & Owner of the Burnt Orange Report. Political Thinker, Digital Explorer, and Time Traveler.


  1. Why vote for Thompson?
    Pardon my rant.  

    I'm going to be a pessimist and assume Mark Thompson is going to be the nominee.  What I'd like to ask is that from the 940,722 people who voted for Thompson in the primary and the possible 100,000 people who will vote for Thompson in the runoff, why did you vote for him?  Was there something that we who voted for Art Hall or Dale Henry missed?  Explain how you vote for a candidate who doesn't even have the basic disclaimer on his website, which any candidate with half a brain knows you're supposed to have?  

    And if the reason is you didn't know about either candidate and you just like his name, why are you even voting then without any knowledge of the candidates?

    • The Thompson Mystery
      I didn't vote for Mark Thompson in either primary or run off.  But, when I met Mark at a local fundraiser, he talked very passionately about the issues like exploding pipelines.  As he explained, whenever he, Hall, and Henry were in forums together, they would always talk about their resumes, while he would talk about what he felt needed to be done on the commission.  

      • well to give them credit
        They did vote for Dale pretty overwhelmingly. This is what happens when you carry over an endorsement from the 4-way primary and don't revote when there is a runoff. The membership from what I even saw firsthand was mostly for Rosemary at that point.  

    • Michael Redding on

      There were 22 early votes in that precinct.
      I don't even think all the UDems showed up to vote.  * looks at UDems candidates *

      But you can fix this if you help clean up an East Austin community! (Pardon the spam)

    • Some help
      UDems work on election day did seem to help some, and helped Dale as well

      Precinct 148:

      Early: 7 Montford, 15 Lehmberg

      10 Dale Henry 6 Mark Thompson

      Election day: 10 Montford, 9 Lehmberg

      1 Dale Henry 5 Mark Thompson

      Precinct 266

      Early: 20 Montford 48 Lehmberg

      35 Dale Henry 13 Mark Thompson

      Election day: 26 Montford 43 Lehmberg

      35 Dale Henry 22 Mark Thompson

      Precinct 277:

      Early: 6 Montford 9 Lehmberg

      8 Dale Henry 4 Mark Thompson

      Election day: 2 Montford 2 Lehmberg

      3 Dale Henry 1 Mark Thompson

      All disappointing turn-out numbers.  It's not like it took a lot of time, when I voted early it took at most a minute.

  2. Constable 1
    Danny Thomas is the new Constable. His numbers are much higher than I thought they would be. Both he and Janie ran a good race. Congratulations to both to sticking to the key issues.

  3. projected winners
    Dale Henry would have to win about 75% of the outstanding vote at this point to make up the ~28,000 vote margin. Sadly, this race is called.

    fwiw- Dale did win my home county of Gillespie in the early vote!

    • Convincing
      I'm not familiar with this race, but that is a very convincing victory.  Where is this district?  What were the issues that made the race this lopsided?  Was the incumbent that bad?  Will his replacement be better (i.e., not support Craddick, work with the Democrats)?  I'd appreciate input from anyone who knows about this race.

    • Craddick had an OK night
      Sheffield, Lewis, Daniel and Legler look to be pretty much in the Craddick column, Button is a maybe (She wasn't the Hill/ABC candidate, but she wasn't the sheer rightwing nutjob Dunning).

      Looks like we've got our work cut out for us in November, we've got great candidates against Sheffield (Murphey), Daniel (Maldonado), Legler (Redmond) and Button (VuLe).  

      Mathwise for the night – Sheffield replaces Delisi which is a wash, Lewis replaces West which is a gain of 1 supporter, Daniel replaces Krusee which I'm going to call a wash because Krusee was terrible and Maldonado is going to win that seat, Legler replaces Talton which is a gain for Craddick but Redmond can take that seat, Button replaces Hill which could be a wash since she's not firm on Craddick and she's got a race against VuLe.

      All told, the only clear win for Craddick was Tryon Lewis.  The rest of the candidates face the same fate that Dee Margo has in El Paso – they've got strong Democratic opponents in a year that looks good for Democrats.

      I know the best way to beat Craddick is to take back the House, and 4 of the Republicans that won tonight represent 4 of the 5 seats we need to take back the House.  That's not even counting our candidates against Margo, Zedler, Anderson, Hamilton, Davis, Murphy, Bohac, etc.

      All in all Craddick has managed to cobble together some weak, out of touch, newbie freshman to comprise his dream team needed to keep absolute power.

      • Angie Chen Button
        Angie is actually a friend of my parents and active in the DFW Chinese community.  I saw her around a lot when I was growing up.

        The best way to describe her politically would probably be as a boilerplate business Republican who is almost apolitical in many respects.  Her political history includes giving money to both Rs and Ds (including prominent support of Ron Kirk) and serving on the DART board.  I doubt she knows much about Craddick other than his name and title.  She caused a bit of a flap among Republicans at a candidate forum when she admitted that she didn't really know the details of current tax policies affecting the district.  I would bet that her political philosophy consists primarily of what's “good for business” in the most generic, cliche terms – low taxes and less regulation – and not much else.

        Of course, this makes her hard to predict.  With little political experience (and probably little interest in political intrigue), she might be inclined to just follow the party line and the path of least resistance by attaching herself to Craddick.  That's my bet.  On the other hand, she could be a very unorthodox Republican by virtue of her lack of strong partisan feelings.  As an immigrant from Taiwan, Angie may be less inclined to go along with more extremist anti-immigrant legislation, but might be tricked/persuaded/bribed into supporting less obviously anti-immigrant measures such as the voter ID or voter registration bills.

        I have little doubt that Sandra Phuong VuLe will be a better legislator in practically all respects – policy, services, and of course, progressivism.  But this is Fred Hill's old district, so it definitely leans heavily R.  What is amazing is that his retirement has brought attention to some of the major demographic shifts in this state; whoever wins this seat, we're guaranteed a second Asian American legislator in Austin next session.  Hill's seat is not the only example.  As veteran legislators retire, more and more districts will become represented by minorities.

  4. Robert Ryland on

    This Mark Thompson thing…
    is just bizarre. Guy doesn't even run a real race – at all. Does almost NOTHING to make face time with voters and raise a profile within the party. Wins by almost 20 over a fella with real experience who criss-crossed the state continuously for several months – at age 76, no less – talking directly to thousands of voters and making the rounds of party gatherings. As a party local, that's really frustrating to see people voting on nothing more than whether someone's name sounds like that of a credible candidate when he they are nothing of the sort. Ugh.  

    • Always the voters fault
      Never the losing candidates fault.

      Just sayin.

      Anyways, it's results time.

      The largest county going to Henry: Trinity County

      The top 18 counties all went for Thompson. Webb switched from a narrow Henry plurality on 3/4 to a 12 point Thompson win. Travis gave Thompson a narrow win. El Paso went for Thompson by 24. Narrow Thompson wins from Dallas, Bexar, and Harris. Hidalgo went Thompson by 32. Orange went for Thompson by 52 for some reason (they must really hate guys named Dale).

      Overall, Thompson won 154 counties tonight. Down from a total of 245 on March 4th.

      As for the whole thing with Thompson not voting. One story mentioned that, and it altered the attack to make Thompson look worse (the Henry PR said that Thompson last voted in November 1996, Henry said that Thompson last voted in the 1996 Republican primary).

      Granted, when stuff like this sneaks its say into stories, it's not good either.

      Henry said he ran for office in Mills County as a Republican because that was the only way to win and serve but said he's always been a Democrat at heart.

      Granted, Henry also ran for the Railroad Commission in 2004 as a Republican too.

      But yes.. it takes two to make a story like Mark Thompson. It takes one quiet candidate, and a few other candidates whose campaigns couldn't ignite an oily rag.

      Anyways, Mark Thompson is no Gene Kelly (after all, Thompson has a website and responds to the media). And I don't think there's an overwhelming hatred for men named Dale in Texas.

      • Results
        There was a pretty large Thompson majority in Southeastern Texas (Jasper, Newton, Orange, etc). Was anything else on the ballot out there?

      • Think what you want, but….
        Dale Henry has more Democratic and Progressive credentials in his little finger than Mark Thompson possesses. He is a hobby candidate who won based on a familiar-sounding name in a race with poor turnout  and voters who, in some cases, didn't bother to learn what they were voting on.

        Dale Henry's campaign has broad grassroots support.  

        • Yeah
          slightly odd when the guy who has run in the last 3 cycles loses to someone due to a “familar sounding name”

          How much campaigning did Dale Henry do in areas with runoffs yesterday? How much did he spend overall? Did he get much support from groups that could get out the vote?

          Henry won Webb County on 3/4 and lost it yesterday. He apparently got beat badly all over East Texas for no explicable reason. He lost many of the largest counties in the state. And yet this was the guy who was going to be significantly better than Thompson?

          Hobby candidates who don't spend money shouldn't win primaries. Unless the opposition just doesn't know how to pull out a victory in a contested primary.

          Sure, I can't tell you why Thompson voted in a Republican primary in 1996 (although headlines putting that as his last vote are basically smearjobs).. but not quite enough was really produced by the “Thompson doesn't vote-gate” either.

          Plus, it's never really a good thing when your candidate has to explain that he only ran for that office in Mills County back in 1996 because he couldn't win as a Democrat (in 1996, Dole won 51/37 in Mills, and Bush won Mills 51/49 in 1994). Same probably applied to his 2004 candidacy. Good thing fortunes for Texas Democrats picked up by 2006.

          By most rights, Dale Henry should have won, but he didn't, and it's not really going to do much good to just blame voters for their love for the surname Thompson.

          Obviously something went wrong with the campaign, and it should be figured out for the next time there's a runoff like this.

          Or you guys should keep a guy named Marc Thomson on reserve to split the Thompson vote.

  5. Close Race in Tarrant County
    This November Democrats in Tarrant County have a very good judicial candidate for the 17th District Court named Randy Turner.  His opponent was decided upon tonight …. maybe.

    In a race that went final about 15 minutes ago, Melody Wilkinson defeated Mike Hrabal by 20 votes, 5279-5259.  With a race that drew over 10,500 voters being decided by 20 votes I'm thinking that there will be a recount.    

  6. Thanks in CD-32
    A big thanks to all those persons who helped with our runoff victory in CD-32.

    With the help of scores of volunteers, we called more persons than actually voted.  So, I am not surprised that we ended up with a wonderful 72.5% to 28.5% victory or that we moved a 68% early vote to a 76.4% election day margin with an incredble weekend of GOTV activity.  

    With continued volunteer support in the grassroots, we can take the fight to Pete Sessions and turn District 32 Blue!

    Please feel free to help us defeat Pete through an ActBlue donation at http://www.ericroberson.org .


    Eric Roberson

    Democratic Candidate for Congress in CD-32

    • Michael McPhail on

      Way to go Eric!
      I was really impressed with your hard work during the run off. You organized phone banks in every part of the district so locals could help out without having to drive halfway across Dallas County and you worked well with the local clubs.

      I think we could be in for a very pleasant surprise come November!

  7. I did my part
    And I was 8.125% of my precincts electorate, too.  The poll workers were so excited when I walked in at 6:40, apparently another voter had been their a little earlier so they called it a surge.

    • Michael McPhail on

      Lucky you
      I was the election judge at North Lake College in Irving and I got absolutely NO VOTERS at all the entire day.  On Primary Day, mind you, we had 274.


  8. Or That There Was An Election
    My precinct voted with two smaller precincts today, just as we did in the primary.  Seven (7) votes were cast today.  There had to be no fewer than 300 votes cast here in the primary.  As a friend of mine is fond of saying, “A drop like that could kill you!”  Yes, even a much lower drop in our voter turnout could kill us in November.  We can't allow that to happen.  I'm an Obama delegate to the state convention, but if Clinton is the nominee she has my vote.  It just goes without saying.    Most of you reading this probably feel the same way.  It will be up to us to get others to believe the same way and to act accordingly in November.

    By the way, I voted for Art Hall in the primary and Dale Henry in the run-off.  However, Mark Thompson will have my vote in November.  

  9. What?
    if Michael Williams is going to base his gubernatorial candidacy on his big win over Mark Thompson, then he loses the primary.

    It's sorta hard to see Williams winning the nomination if someone like Hutchison runs. They'd probably have to clear the field for him to get him through a primary, right?

  10. Michael Williams in 2010 governor race?
    Beyond seeing a fairly obvious difference between the average Texas Republican primary voter and those Texans who typically vote Republican in the fall, I can't really fathom statewide Republican primaries. That said, I have difficulty believing that Texas Republican primary voters are so disciplined that they'll nominate an African-American candidate for governor even if he were to be anointed by the right-wing religious and reactionary business elite that has done quite well in their down-ballot primaries the past few cycles. I'm interested in learning more.

  11. Not necessarily…
    ….Kay Bailey has ambitions and the lead (right now, without having entered the primary) but you must consider that the right-wing, religious right base of the Texas GOP cannot abide Hutchison.

    Also consider that now, Williams basically doesn't have to spend enough for a McDonald's cup of coffee to win the general against Thompson, and off the bat he has more usable cash than KBH. Remember that her money is federalized, and the FEC has ruled against her being able to use it in a state race, if I recall correctly.  

  12. Yeah
    Contribution-wise, is it perfectly legal for Hutchison to just go to contributors, ask for contributions, and then refund contributions they made to the federal account?

    I'd imagine the “giant grocery sack of money” law still applies to contributions down there.

    As for spending money, I checked the 2006 reports. Jones spent $336K through the 10/30/06 report. Henry spent $9K.

    Henry spent $5K through the March primary this year. No report could be found for Thomas.

    I'd guess Williams spents $100K no matter what. And it wouldn't shock me if Thompson runs ahead of Noreiga in November.

    Considering how Thompson has done so far.. it's more likely than you'd think. ;)

  13. To be fair…
    Williams has 3 degrees, worked in 2 Presidential administrations, and spent 9 years on the RRC.  Thompson is a social worker who used to be a cop whose experience consists of allegedly filing an open records request.

    I think they probably taught Williams how to tie his shoe in law school.  Definitely in his Master's program.

    We're not going to beat Williams by belittling him.  The guy is arguably the most intelligent statewide in Texas right now.  We beat him by organizing and mobilizing.  I'm ready, are you?

  14. WOW
    And is any of his education in the O&G industry or is he basically another political hack with a law degree, someone so flaky and stupid they couldn't cut it in the real world so they went into 'public service'?

    I've seen Williams performance on the RRC and remain profoundly unimpressed. I have absolutely no doubt that someone with a genuine interest in the office would do far better.

    I'm fine with organizing and mobilizing. However, I'm also not done belittling the man who has allowed a large section of the watershed in Panola County to become polluted. The man truly deserves absolutely no respect.  

  15. Thanks to all


    Thanks. I said at the begining that I cannot control some factors, but that I will not be outworked.  I hope you will be part of that hard work so we can beat Pete together!  


    Thanks for all you do.  I look forward to being able to work with you and the entire Irving Democratic Club.  My campaign will continue to divide the District into 5 Sections, including an Irving Section, so everyone can maximize their participation in their own area.

    PI Lawyer:

    Thanks; please send me an e-mail at enroberson@yahoo.com and I will love to follow up on this wonderful offer.


    Eric Roberson

    Democratic Candidate for Congress in CD-32

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