Red All Over

The Republicans are (still) cruising in Texas, but there’s drama in the November elections if you know where to look.

Rick Perry has held a double-digit lead in the governor’s race all year long. Republicans are heavily favored to run the table in all the other statewide races. Does anything matter in these contests?
Strangely enough, second place matters—for the Democrats. If Chris Bell finishes behind independent candidates Carole Keeton Strayhorn and Kinky Friedman, it will be a morale buster that will make it harder to recruit candidates and raise money for 2008. Political junkies will also be looking at obscure races like court seats and railroad commissioner to get an idea of what each party’s base vote is going to be in the next election cycle.

Can Texas affect the national midterm elections?
Absolutely, and we can thank Tom DeLay

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