In addition to his own race for reelection to the House, Straus must fend off challenges to his committee chairs. Eleven chairs face primary opponents, including several who head top-tier committees (Appropriations, Ways & Means, and State Affairs). Conventional wisdom holds that Eissler, Pitts, Hamilton, Hopson, and Truitt have tough races, and there is always the unexpected (see Hubert Vo vs. Talmadge Heflin, 2003). This is a lot of ground for Straus to defend. Remember what happened when Craddick lost five seats in 2006. He was fatally wounded. Straus can’t afford for that to happen. He needs to get his team reelected. The Straus chairs who have primary opposition: Bill Callegari (Government Efficiency & Reform) Byron Cook (State Affairs) John Davis (Economic & Small Business Development) Rob Eissler (Public Education) Mike “Tuffy” Hamilton (Licensing & Administrative Procedures) Harvey Hildebran (Ways & Means) Chuck Hopson (General Investigating & Ethics) Sid Miller (Homeland Security & Public Safety) Jim Pitts (Appropriations) Allan Ritter (Natural Resources) Vicki Truitt (Pensions, Investments, & Financial Services)
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