Cole, Hinojosa, Rodriguez win Texas House races

Meara Isenberg

Democrats Sheryl Cole, incumbent Gina Hinojosa and incumbent Eddie Rodriguez won their races for the Texas House of Representatives on Tuesday night.

Cole won the race to represent House District 46, which covers parts of East Austin and Pflugerville, beating Republican Gabriel Nila and Libertarian Kevin Ludlow with 83.65 percent of the vote at press time. Democratic Rep. Dawnna Dukes previously represented the district and served 12 terms in the House before losing the primary to Cole in March.

Hinojosa, who has represented House District 49 since her election in 2016, beat Republican challenger Kyle Austin with 84.90 percent of the vote at press time. HD 49 covers parts of North, South and Central Austin, including UT-Austin and West Campus.

Rodriguez ran unopposed for House District 51, which encompasses parts of East and South Austin and all of Southeast Travis County. He has represented the district since he was first elected in 2002.

Cole, former Austin Mayor Pro Tem, is currently an accountant and an attorney. Her platform includes improving the state’s public education system, making her district more affordable for residents and protecting women’s reproductive rights.

“I am committed to having an education system that is fair for all — one committed to American values that delivers progress for generations to come,” Cole said. “And that will take hard work, an open heart, and working with coalitions to make that happen.”

Hinojosa, former Austin ISD Board president, has a platform including public and higher education issues, such as giving public universities the right to opt out of campus carry and bringing living-wage jobs to Texas in order for more residents to afford education for their children.

“I’m proud to have been re-elected by the constituents of House District 49 to serve as State Representative,” Hinojosa said. “UT-Austin played a huge part in this and I’m grateful to have had student support.”

The races were called with 74.56 percent of precincts reporting at press time.