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BOR Elections Weekly Round Up, September 12 - 22: Sen. Davis Sets a Date, Rep. Lewis Retires

by: Joseph Vogas

Mon Sep 23, 2013 at 10:00 AM CDT

Welcome to our first weekly round up of election news in the state of Texas! It has been a big week, with the launch of our candidate trackers. Burnt Orange Report is currently watching 223 of the partisan races that will appear on the November 2014 general election ballots throughout the state of Texas. Every Monday morning, this column will recap all the changes made to our elections charts and other significant elections news we covered in the previous week.

The big news last week: Sen. Wendy Davis announced October 3rd will be the date when we find out what office she will seek in 2014. Previously, Sen. Davis had said she had limited her options to Governor or re-election to the Texas Senate. In ten short days, we will finally know!

On Friday afternoon, State Rep. Tryon Lewis (R-Odessa) announced he would retire from the Texas House at the end of his current term. Rep. Lewis will have only served three terms in the Texas House and currently serves as the Chair of the House Committee on Judiciary & Civil Jurisprudence. Before his election in 2008, Rep. Lewis was a State District Judge for over twenty years. This means, House District 81, where President Obama got 24.18% in 2014, will be open in next year's general election.

Click after the jump to see the 44 other changes made on the ratings charts this week, including the 23 lawmakers Burnt Orange Report confirmed are seeking re-election in 2014.

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HD-55: Sam Murphey (D) vs. Ralph Sheffield (R) - Open Seat

by: Phillip Martin

Tue Oct 14, 2008 at 03:15 AM CDT

STATE OF THE RACE: Lean Sheffield (Republican Hold)

Candidate Page: Sam Murphey
Candidate Page: Ralph Sheffield

House District Map: District 155
District History: 2006 Election Results

Click here to return to the Burnt Orange Political Report home page.

30-Day Out Campaign Finance Report:

HD-55: Murphey vs. Sheffield
Contributions Expenditures Cash on Hand
Democrat Sam Murphey
$104,852.07 $89,666.32 $117,280.90
Republican Ralph Sheffield
$80,689.02 $60,105.50 $51,222.37
Murphey/Sheffield's Adv. (Noted) $92,325.73 $65,355.68 $76,169.49

Democrat Sam Murphey is one of my favorite candidates this cycle, and he provides another excellent example of the "sleeper" races that Democrats are running across the state. As I reported many months ago, when the Belton Journal wrote the following...

[Murphey is a 22-year career as an officer in the U.S. Army that took him to various assignments in the United States, Europe, Korea and Vietnam. For the past 16 years, he has served closely with U.S. Representative Chet Edwards as his primary contact for the military and veterans communities.

...don't be surprised if this race sneaks up on some folks. Murphey has developed strong name ID in the race and has the credentials to back it up. He's also running in an area -- Temple -- where Democrat Chet Edwards (Murphey's former employer) has shown folks that a sensible, honest Democrat can be an extremely effective community leader.

There are two factors keeping this race Republican: retiring incumbent Rep. Diane Delisi was an honest legislator. Whatever you thought of her policies, she always behaved ethically, and her potential successor, Sheffield, appears to be doing the same.

Murphey will have to rely on good old fashioned shoe leather to win this one. We think he can do it, but for now, he still has a few hurdles to climb. 

Here are some other links that previous coverage of the race on Burnt Orange Report:

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