Texas Democrats take aim at Ted Cruz's Senate seat

The Texas Tribune reported that the Houston-based Escobar was keeping an eye on Garcia's race across the state in El Paso throughout election night.

Patterson, in a statement, said: "While I didn't win, Texas did". My beat was the congressional races, so that concentration might skew my perspective a bit, but in the aftermath, I'm looking at the overall campaign as what the pollsters call a likely November Democratic voter, and trying to make some very early sense, nearly at random, of what just happened.

Sen. Ted Cruz fired off his opening shot against his Democratic challenger, Rep. Beto O'Rourke - and he did it with a song. O'Rourke is raising more money than Cruz so far but remains very unlikely to win in November. "That being said, it doesn't have to be a death knell for Beto". O'Rourke's press team said he raised $6.2 million since announcing his candidacy in March.

In the 32nd District contest to take on GOP Rep. Pete Sessions for his Dallas-area seat, former National Football League player Colin Allred led the way with 40%, and three other candidates battling in the mid-teens to make the runoff.

O'Rourke responded in his own CNN interview. "Which of the two are going to have a better idea of what's going on in Texas?"

And O'Rourke's decision to eschew political action committees could be a handicap through November, with analysts saying he needs north of $20 million to $25 million to launch a credible offensive against Cruz, unless super-PACs pop up to support him.

In 2006, for instance, when Democrats enjoyed an 11.5 percent generic congressional ballot advantage nationally in the final pre-election Real Clear Politics average of polls, they regained the majority in the House of Representatives with a net gain of 31 seats on election day.

So if Mr. O'Rourke is going for a Latin sound to appeal to one segment of Texas voters, Mr. Cruz could be accused of veering Anglo-Saxon to appeal to another.

"I dont think it's about wooing Latinos", she said.

As for O'Rourke, he's crisscrossing the state, determined to visit every county in Texas (there are 254).

O'Rourke, an upstart but energetic candidate, hopes to capitalize on his growing star power and catch the blue wave his party is banking on across the country. One poll found that 40 percent of Texas voters haven't heard of him. The latter has a lengthy Texas history, but much of it long before the population was 28 million and decades before it had become a largely urban state.

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