[Guest post by DRJ]
A Texas Tea Party candidate and novice politician trounced incumbent GOP State Rep. Delwin Jones of Lubbock in a Republican primary run-off:
“The long legislative career of state Rep. Delwin Jones is over. And for accountant Charles Perry a new day has dawned.
Jones, who has served in the Texas Legislature for nearly 30 years, including eight as a Democrat from 1965 to 1973, lost decisively to Perry in Tuesday’s Republican primary runoff.
With all the votes counted, Perry got 57.6 percent of the vote and Jones 43.4 percent.
Perry, who ran a shoestring campaign compared to attorney Zach Brady, who also challenged Jones but finished third in the March 2 primary despite raising more than a quarter million dollars, did what conservative GOP operators and hundreds of thousands couldn’t do for years – defeat Jones.”
Lubbock made history tonight. Not only was Jones the oldest member of the Texas Legislature but Perry may be the Texas Legislature’s — and perhaps the nation’s — first Tea Party winner since there is no Democrat or Libertarian candidate on the ballot.
Perry ran on a platform of fiscal responsibility but he wasn’t given much chance to make the run-off, let alone win. Political analysts were especially doubtful of his chances after he pledged to work to rescind in-state tuition for illegal immigrants.
UPDATE: The excerpt above is from the online version of the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal. Since I posted, the A-J has updated its story to revise the vote totals — “With all 80 precincts counted, Perry received 57.8 percent of the vote and Jones 42.2 percent in the five-county district” — and add this:
“And now that there are no more elections in District 83 this year, it also means that for the first time in more than two decades the Panhandle/South Plains region will send at least three freshmen legislators to Austin.
The two other House districts in the region that will be represented by rookies are neighboring District 84 and District 87 in the Panhandle.
The possibility of a fourth freshman representing the region exists because in District 85 two-term incumbent Joe Heflin, D-Crosbyton, is expected to have a tough challenge from Plainview Republican Jim Landtroop. The Republican Party considers Heflin vulnerable because he is one of about a half-dozen House Democrats representing GOP-leaning districts.”
Panhandle term limits.