GOP Bombs in Border Conversion Quest
as Lameduck Rep Decries Apathy in RGV
“We are going to turn the Rio Grande Valley red." - Greg Abbott, Harlingen, October 10
November 9, 2022
The red wave that Texas Republicans envisioned proved to a mirage when Governor Greg Abbott won a third term as governor on Tuesday night but failed to achieve his overriding goals of turning the Rio Grande Valley red and winning a majority of the Hispanic vote at the polls as a springboard to a presidential race in 2024.
The GOP managed to flip a Texas House seat in the RGV when Janie Flores claimed a victory in an open race with 51 percent of the vote in a district that had been crafted to produce such an outcome. The Republicans picked up a congressional seat that's anchored in the Valley as well when Monica De La Cruz won there last night with more than 53 percent of the general election vote based on the tentative tally at Secretary of State John Scott's office.
"We started this campaign in South Texas," Abbott said in a Twitter post during a victory party in McAllen after staving off a challenge from Democrat Beto O'Rourke late Tuesday night. "We celebrated our primary victory in South Texas.
Tonight, we return to South Texas to celebrate re-election for four more years of prosperity."
But after pouring record sums of money into the Democratic stronghold of South Texas, the Republican governor had little else to celebrate in border areas beyond a a boost of less than 5 percentage points on average in major counties up and down the Rio Grande. Republicans who were counting on Abbott coattails to win have cause to feel shortchanged.
Lameduck Republican U.S. Rep. Mayra Flores of Los Indios blamed lethargic GOP and independent voters for a loss in a district where Democratic U.S. Rep. Vicente Gonzalez of McAllen ousted her with almost 53 percent of the vote less than five months after she made her debut in Congress after a special election win in June when he wasn't on the ballot.
"The RED WAVE did not happen," Flores complained in a tweet. "Republicans and Independents stayed home. "DO NOT COMPLAIN ABOUT THE RESULTS IF YOU DID NOT DO YOUR PART!"
The GOP fell flat in Kat Parker's high-dollar bid to oust State Rep. Eddie Morales - an Eagle Pass Democrat who secured a second term with almost 56 percent of the vote after the Republican raised four times more campaign cash for the race. Democratic State Rep. Abel Herrero of Corpus Christi won a re-election race with almost 58 percent of the vote in a district that could have flipped if the governor had been on the mark with his South Texas forecast. .
Democratic U.S. Rep. Henry Cuellar of Laredo won easily as well with nearly 57 percent of the vote himself in a re-election fight against the GOP's Cassy Garcia.
"Looks like you'll have plenty time to audition for Narcos in the near future!" Cuellar told Garcia in a tweet after the Associated Press projected him to be the winner. "Nice try Cassy! It may require you learning Spanish. Rosetta Stone is on standby!"
But Cuellar and Garcia put the hatchet aside for the time being on Wednesday morning when they congratulated each other for hard-fought campaigns.
more to come ...
“We are going to turn the Rio Grande Valley red,” said Republican Gov. Greg Abbott, kicking off a rally in the Texas border city of Harlingen. octo 10
more to come ...