Gov. Abbott Targeting GOP House Incumbents

Gov. Greg Abbott is spending big money this primary season to unseat a handful incumbents from his own party.

They include state Reps. Sarah Davis, R-West University and Wayne Faircloth, R-Galveston, who challenged the governor on ethics issues.

However, Harvey Kronberg at the Quorum Report believes that's just a technicality.

“All were Joe Straus supporters and the governor wants a less independent speaker going into the next session, so by inserting himself into these races he's trying to send a message to the House there may be a consequence for their speaker vote,” he says.

Gov. Abbott so far has spent roughly $160,000 on ads against Davis.  And the plan could ultimately backfire.

“Sarah Davis is a moderate Republican from a white collar, highly professional, college educated swing district and a candidate that is too extremely right could easily lose to a Democrat in the fall,” says Kronberg.

Neither Davis nor Faircloth were available for an interview.

Meanwhile, Kronberg says in all his years of covering Texas politics, he's never seen anything like this.

“This is bare knuckles fight between Abbott and sitting House members, pretty much unprecedented,” he says.  “Even back in the days when we were a one party Democratic state, I can't recall a governor using their war chest and inserting themselves into political campaigns like this.”

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