Despite Democratic Early Voting Surge, More Republicans Voted Overall In Primaries

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Texas has always been a conservative bastion, but the much stronger turnout in the primary races to select nominees from their own party shows Democratic voters are highly motivated, threatening Republican control of the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives in midterm elections in November.

State figures show that more than 1 million Democrats cast votes in primary races across the state on Tuesday, nearly twice as many as in 2014, the last time primaries were held for a midterm election.

The margin has shrunk significantly from 2010 and 2014, when the margin between votes cast in the Republican and Democratic primaries ran closer to 40 percentage points.

Democrats have a better shot in November of unseating three Republican congressional incumbents - Rep. Pete Sessions in Dallas, Rep. John Culberson in Houston and Rep. What's more, at least three of those runoffs in May will feature women going head-to-head, including a key race for Democrats in their bid to take control of the U.S. House this fall. And when Republicans unaccountably lost a Senate seat in Alabama in December, the path to a Democratic takeover of the Senate looked suddenly very real, particularly when combined with the likelihood of a second Senate election in blue-trending Arizona and the recruitment of a formidable Democratic candidate in dark-red Tennessee.

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If you do not live in Texas, you may not fully appreciate its sheer size and how much it costs to reach voters here.

Democratic turnout for Texas' primary Senate race exceeded 1,036,950 voters, which was higher than any nonpresidential year primary in 24 years.

Equally striking was the showing by women on the ballot.

Margo McClinton Stoglin, Texas director for IGNITE, a group focused on getting more women to run for office, said more candidates are letting go of fears about fundraising and not winning their races.

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It is clear that House Democrats have no intention of helping House Republicans provide a pay raise for our teachers, and that we must use funding measures that do not require Democratic support to pass.

For all the talk of renewed Democratic energy heading into the 2018 midterms, Texas Republicans also set a new benchmark for turnout in a midterm election.

Democratic primary voters said they were energized by frustrations with President Donald Trump.

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Five Democratic U.S. Senators would lose re-election to a Republican opponent if the elections were held today, a new poll from Axios and SurveyMonkey shows. Later that year, Republican George W. Bush and Republican Kay Bailey Hutchison would respectively win the gubernatorial and US Senate elections in the state easily. We also know that Sherrod Brown has a "populist" profile that might appeal to a significant sliver of 2016 Trump voters. Even Attorney General Ken Paxton, who has been indicted on felony securities fraud charges, clinched his party's nomination unopposed.

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