Special elections were held on Tuesday for four seats in the Texas Legislature: Senate District 26, where Rep. Trey Martinez Fischer (D-San Antonio) faces Rep. Jose Menendez (D-San Antonio); House District 13, where Carolyn Bilski (R) faces Leighton Schubert (R); House District 17, where John Cyrier (R) faces Brent Golemon (R), and House District 123, where Diego Bernal (D) faces Nunzio Previtera (R).
Menendez has been declared the winner in SD 26, defeating Martinez Fischer 59-41. Menendez captured 60 percent of the early vote and was able to maintain that margin as the election day results rolled in. Menendez will replace Leticia Van de Putte (D) in the Senate, after she left to run for mayor of San Antonio.
HD 13 was left vacant when then-State Rep. Lois Kolkhorst (R-Brenham) won a special election to the Senate to fill the seat left vacant by Glenn Hegar upon his election as Texas Comptroller. Schubert won 57 to 43.
Cyrier has won HD 17, 52-48, in the race to replace Tim Kleinschmidt, who resigned his seat to take a job with the Texas Department of Agriculture.
In HD 123, Bernal defeated Previtera, 64-36, to fill another seat vacated by a candidate for San Antonio mayor, former State Rep. Mike Villareal (D).
None of these elections change the party breakdown in either the Texas House or Senate, and therefore will not have any effect on the Republicans’ majority control of both chambers of the Legislature.
Texas’ special election musical chairs is not yet over. Another special election will need to be held to fill Rep. Menendez’s seat. Governor Greg Abbott (R) is responsible for selecting the date and is expected to make the announcement soon.
Follow Sarah Rumpf on Twitter @rumpfshaker.