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Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst loses big in Texas Republican primary

State Sen. Dan Patrick, after ousting incumbent lieutenant governor in primary, promises to put the nasty campaign behind him.
By Frances Burns   |   May 28, 2014 at 10:28 AM   |   Comments

http://cdnph.upi.com/sv/em/upi_com/UPI-3001401282369/2014/1/b50b2613e30217b3ae906a6e32fc21c1/Lt-Gov-David-Dewhurst-loses-big-in-Texas-Republican-primary.jpg
AUSTIN, Texas, May 28 (UPI) -- Texas Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, seeking a third term, lost the Republican primary runoff to state Sen. Dan Patrick by 30 percentage points.

Attorney General Greg Abbott, the Republican candidate for governor, welcomed Patrick's decisive victory.

"Texas voters have continued to demonstrate their steadfast commitment to the conservative values and initiatives that have and will continue to keep our state on the pathway toward greater opportunity," Abbott said. "Now more than ever, we must work together to make tomorrow's Texas even better than today's."

The Democratic ticket is headed by state Sen. Wendy Davis, who became a national figure with her filibuster against new abortion regulations.

In Texas, lieutenant governor is a powerful position, heading the state senate and naming committee members. The race also attracted attention because it pitted a three-term incumbent regarded as an establishment figure against a Tea Party challenger.

The secretary of state's office reported on its website that, with more than 98 percent of precincts reporting, Patrick had 65 percent of the vote in Tuesday's election and Dewhurst 35 percent. Patrick was the leader in the March primary with 41 percent of the vote, while Dewhurst had 28 percent.

Both Patrick, also a rightwing radio host, and Dewhurst promised to put what had been a nasty campaign behind them. Dewhurst said he would work for the Republican slate of candidates.

The secretary of state's office reported on its website that, with more than 98 percent of precincts reporting, Patrick had 65 percent of the vote and Dewhurst 35 percent. Patrick was the leader in the March primary with 41 percent of the vote, while Dewhurst had 28 percent.

Both Patrick and Dewhurst promised to put what had been a nasty campaign behind them. Dewhurst said he would work for the entire Republican slate of candidates.

Another candidate released Patrick's medical records during the primary campaign, revealing a stay in a psychiatric hospital 30 years ago. Patrick at one point offered a $1,000 reward for a tape of a Dewhurst push poll.

"Ronald Reagan said, 'I don't have enemies, I have opponents,'" Patrick said Tuesday before the results were in. "And you've heard me say so many times, I'm a Christian first. I'm trying to walk that talk."

The Democrats, however, appeared to hope the Republican primary campaign would spill over into the general election.

"Someone with a record of vile, toxic rhetoric is simply unfit to lead our great state," said Emmanuel Garcia, communications director for the Texas Democratic Party.

© 2014 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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