UPDATE: In my original post, I mistakenly referred to previous endorsements by some of the state’s major newspapers, and I have corrected the errors.
This election has all the earmarks of being one of the strangest ever. First, as I have opined before, this is the weakest ticket the Republican party has put forward in decades. There is just no appeal to it, from top (Abbott) to bottom (Paxton). Second, the Democrats have better down-ballot candidates than the Republicans. Mike Collier, the Democratic candidate for comptroller, is a CPA. His opponent, Glenn Hegar, knows next to nothing about state government finance, and what he does know he learned from the current comptroller, which is hardly a recommendation. The R’s candidate for attorney general, Ken Paxton, has pled guilty to violating state securities laws. His Democratic opponent is Sam Houston, a real lawyer and litigator. The Republicans’ candidate for agriculture commissioner is Sid Miller, one of the churliest lawmakers ever to set foot in the Capitol. Jim Hogan, by contrast, the Democratic candidate for ag commissioner, is a salt-of-the-earth fellow.
The point is, this is a much weakened Texas Republican party, and there is not much that is appealing about the ticket. What appeal it did have was pretty much wiped out by Wendy Davis’s attacks on Greg Abbott’s character. Is Davis competitive enough to throw a scare into Abbott? I doubt it. This is still a very red state, and I don’t think it can turn around in one election cycle.