Republicans' supermajority control of the Texas senate got a major boost with Tuesday's special election in San Antonio. The party picked up a seat that had been safety Democrat for years when Pete Flores defeated Pete Gallego in the election to replace convicted fraudster Carlos Uresti.
It currently gives Republicans a 21-10 edge in the Senate.
Why is that important? Republican senators back in 2015 lowered the threshold from two-thirds to three-fifths, meaning they only needed 19 of 31 votes to pass their bills out of chamber.
"With 20 Republican senators, that made it so we could even have some difference of opinion within the Republican caucus and still be able to pass out the kind of things that Texas voters clearly voted for," says state GOP chairman James Dickey.
"It definitely makes a difference when you're able to move things through quickly, but our founders, everything about the way they set up the Texas Legislature was so that there were multiple chances to stop anything."
Dickey who believes conservative voters will realize what's at stake when they decide two more hotly contested seats in November.
"The economy that we have benefited from the last 14 years has been a direct result of unified Republican leadership and that they will continue to send near supermajorities back to the chamber so that we can continue that," he says.