Dem primary turnout doubles in Texas: ‘If conservatives stay home … we could see Texas turn blue’

Dem primary turnout doubles in Texas: ‘If conservatives stay home … we could see Texas turn blue’
Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) leaves the Senate Chamber following early morning votes at the U.S. Capitol February 9, 2018 in Washington, DC. Cruz warned that conservatives need to show up for the primary. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Increased enthusiasm among Democratic voters in conservative Texas manifested itself during Tuesday’s primary election, as more than twice as many Democratic voters turned out than did in 2014, The Hill reported.

By the numbers

More than 1 million Democrats voted in the primary Tuesday, the highest mark in the state since 2002.

Democrats had 111 congressional candidates, compared to 41 candidates in 2014.

Republican turnout was still significantly higher than Democratic turnout, with about 1.5 million people voting in the Republican primary.

Democrats made up 40 percent of the total primary votes cast, compared to less than 30 percent in 2014.

Cruz warns Republicans to show up

GOP Sen. Ted Cruz, who will be running against Democratic candidate Beto O’Rourke, warned Republicans not to let Democrats gain more ground in Texas.

“The extreme left is energized and angry, and it makes it all the more important for conservatives to show up in November,” Cruz told CNN. “If conservatives stay home, if we rest on our laurels, we could see Texas turn blue.”

David Wasserman of the Cook Political Report noticed a shift in Texas that is tied to growing anti-Trump sentiments in some areas.

“There’s something different going on in Texas this cycle,” Wasserman said. “It’s a uniquely anti-Trump state, because it has a rare combination of diversity and a suburban professional class. And, in that sense, it’s becoming a little bit more like California every year.”

Still, Cruz believes Texas is conservative at its core.

“They are mobilizing in a powerful way,” Cruz said to CBS Dallas. “At the end of the day, the good news is that there are a lot more conservatives in Texas than there are liberals.

“Left-wing rage may raise a bunch of money from people online, but I don’t believe it reflects the views of a majority of Texans,” Cruz said on a conference call.