Travis County area incumbents win reelection bids

Cassi Pollock

Incumbents Celia Israel (D-Austin), Jason Isaac (R-Dripping Springs) and Donna Howard (D-Austin) won last night, carrying all three representatives to another term for the 85th Texas Legislature.

Celia Israel, the Democrat incumbent for House District 50, won 64.23 percent of the vote, according to the Office of the Texas Secretary of State, ousting her Republican challenger Ceasar Ruiz.

Republican Jason Isaac, representing House District 45 since his election in 2013, won this year’s re-election unopposed, according to the Office of the Texas Secretary of State. 

Donna Howard beat her Libertarian opponent, Ben Easton, with 79.55 percent of vote, according to the Office of the Texas Secretary of State. Howard has represented the house district since 2006. 

Speaking with The Daily Texan, Howard said she was hopeful Democrats would pick up down-ballot wins in Texas this year. 

“We need more Democrats in the Texas House to try and move forward with the issues most Texans care about, rather than being caught up in the social issues the Republican leadership proposes,” Howard said. 

Vincent Harding, the chairman of the Travis County Democratic Party, joined Howard and said he expected Democrats to pick up a few seats in the Texas House and overall perform well in Travis County, a usually left-leaning county. 

“We’ve had the highest straight-ticket performances we’ve ever had with over 68 percent,” Harding said. “I’m extremely proud of the team that’s been working hard
at this.”

Andy Hogue, communications director for the Travis County Republican Party, said he thought Republican representation at the Capitol would most likely remain the same. 

“I think [Republicans] will maintain the same dynamics in the Legislature,” Hogue said. “I don’t think we’ll see a shift at all. We may see more Republicans this year.”

The races were called with 67.74 percent of precincts reporting at press time.