Republican Mayors Association applauds ‘red wave’ in races largely featuring only Republicans

The Republican Mayors Association (RMA), which works to elect GOP candidates in local races nationwide, is congratulating Republican Texans who secured victory or re-election Saturday in municipal elections across the state.

RMA President Eric L. Johnson applauded what he described as “a red wave” that “swept across Texas.”

“In droves, voters in cities across the state made their voices heard, rejecting far-left policies and candidates for Republicans who will deliver results,” he wrote.

Republicans indeed dominated the May 4 elections, with numerous Republican mayors reelected to their leadership roles, and new GOP candidates securing victories in open races.

But most of the victories occurred in cities and towns where Republicans were facing other Republicans at the ballot box, all but guaranteeing a red wave would materialize.

While there are some exceptions, numerous races were held without any Democrats running.

Those exceptions were Republican Gerard Hudspeth defeating Democrat Luc Wedeworth in Denton; Republican TJ Gilmore beating Democrat Delia Parker Mims in Lewisville; Republican Jerry Cain besting Democrat Manning Rollerson in Freeport; and Republican Mayor Bruce Robinson earning re-election over fellow Republican Kevin Cudd and Democrat Connie Murphy in Sour Lake.

And in Surfside Beach, Republican Gregg Bisso bested no-party candidate Milo Wilson.

To the RMA’s credit, Denton has a voter registration advantage for Democrats, with nearly 36,000 registered voters to just over 33,000 registered Republicans. Freeport has a 16-point advantage for Democrats, with about 3,000 registered Democrats to 2,000 registered GOP voters. Lewisville only has a slight advantage for the GOP.

But no one would have ever bet on a Democrat in Sour Lake, where Republicans make up more than 70% of the electorate.

And in numerous other races, Democrats were absent from the ballot.

In Lubbock, Republican Mark McBrayer will head to a runoff with fellow Republican Steve Massengale in a city that features a 10-percentage-point GOP advantage.

Republican Charles Hightower defeated GOP opponent Lucas McCrary with 61% of the vote in Anahuac, where GOP voters makeup nearly 61% of the electorate.

Voters in Bridge City reelected their Republican Mayor, David Rutledge, after he defeated GOP challenger Carl Harbert with 61% of the vote. Republicans comprise more than 66% of the electorate, compared to just shy of 15% who are Democrats.

Republican Laurie Boudreaux won unopposed in Simonton, as did Republican Bradley Dawson in Hillcrest Village. There are fewer than 500 voters in Simonton, and 308 of them are Republicans. Hillcrest Village has 534 registered voters — 371, nearly 70%, are Republicans.

Three Republicans ran in Holiday Lakes, with Norman Schroeder edging out James Hamby and Livia Flanary with 51% of the vote.

The case was similar in Jones Creek where Republican Corey Thomas carried the most votes in a three way race with two other members of the GOP, Nicole Hardesty and Terry Jeffers in a race that had just 243 votes cast, according to Brazoria County news outlet The Facts. Thomas unseated Jeffers, who had been Mayor for two years.

It goes on.

Republican Gerald Roznovsky won unopposed in Lake Jackson. Laurie Beal Kincannon, also a Republican, did the same in West Columbia.

More GOP on GOP battles unfolded in Bayou Vista, where Republican Paula Eshleman beat Ray Stone and Herb Petticord, both also Republicans, with 65% of the vote. Santa Fe Republican Brandon Noto bested fellow Republican Fidencio Leija in the city, with 73% of the vote.

In Galveston, Republican Craig Brown beat Frank Thomas Maceo with nearly 70% of the vote. It wasn’t immediately clear what Maceo’s party affiliation is — the contest, like others in the state, was nonpartisan. But the RMA has cause for celebration, as Democrats enjoy a voter registration advantage of about 11 percentage points.

Asked for a list of candidates the RMA backed this election cycle, a spokesperson responded by email saying the group’s “statement was intended to be a blanket statement congratulating the GOP mayoral candidates who won across the state of Texas.” He also pointed out that the group specifically congratulated Hudspeth and Gilmore on their victories in separate posts on X.

In a follow-up, they pointed to ballot initiatives in Dallas and Fort Worth that passed, after the GOP backed them, and to the Mayor’s race in Waco where Republican Jim Holmes won with 71% of the vote in a city that has a nearly 10-percentage-point advantage for Democrats.

And the organization claimed in Johnson’s statement that the municipal election results could be a bellwether.

“The election results in Texas are a preview of what is to come around the country in the coming months. More Republican mayors will be elected and the RMA will play a crucial role in many of these races,” he wrote.

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Voter registration data and political affiliations used in this report are from L2 Datamapping.



Janelle Irwin Taylor has been a professional journalist covering local news and politics in Tampa Bay since 2003. In early 2022, she left the business to serve as Communications Director for St. Petersburg Mayor Ken Welch. After leaving the administration, Janelle briefly worked as a communications consultant for candidates, businesses and non-profits, before accepting her position as Publisher for Southeast Politics, a homecoming of sorts to her Florida Politics roots, where she served as a reporter and editor for several years. Janelle has also held roles covering the intersection of politics and business for the Tampa Bay Business Journal and general assignment news with an emphasis on social justice and climate change for WMNF Community Radio, where she also hosted a political call-in show under several names, including Last Call, Midpoint and The Scoop. Janelle has a lust for politics and policy. When she’s not bringing you the day’s news, you might find Janelle enjoying nature with her husband, children and two dogs. You can reach Janelle at [email protected]


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