Ken Paxton beats George P. Bush in race for Texas Attorney General

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton defeated Land Commissioner George P. Bush in a runoff on Tuesday, effectively ending the Bush dynasty in a state dominated by the political family.

The race marks the first time in decades that a Bush has lost in a Texas state primary. Mr. Bush’s grandfather was the late former President George HW Bush, while George W. Bush, who was twice elected Governor of Texas before becoming US President, is his uncle. He is also the son of former Florida Governor Jeb Bush.

Mr Paxton benefited from former President Donald Trump’s support for his campaign, despite Mr Bush making overtures to the former President. In 2018, Mr. Bush supported and voted for Mr. Trump, although Mr. Trump frequently criticized his father, saying the elder Bush supported immigration reform because he was married to a woman from Mexico.

Mr. Bush challenged Mr. Paxton for the Attorney General’s race after Mr. Paxton faced federal indictment and an FBI investigation. But Mr Paxton was backed by Mr Trump’s rank and file after Mr Paxton sued four swing states in the Supreme Court in 2020 to overturn the 2020 presidential election. In addition, Mr. Paxton also spoke at the “Stop the Steal” rally in the Ellipse of the White House ahead of the Jan. 6 riots in the US Capitol last year.

In March, neither man won a clear majority but were the top two voters in the primary, forcing them into a runoff. Mr Trump’s spokesman also criticized Mr Bush for being similar to his father while showing Mr Paxton had close ties to the former president, who remains popular in the Lone Star State.

Mr. Paxton’s victory marks the end of a Bush dominance in Texas that began when George HW Bush, originally from Connecticut, immigrated to Texas after graduating from Yale and worked in the oil industry.

After becoming the first Republican congressman to represent Houston and losing two Senate elections, the eldest Bush joined Ronald Reagan’s ticket in 1980, beginning a 40-year streak of Bush’s winning statewide in Texas. George P. Bush’s uncle won the governorship in 1994 and 1998, winning the state both times while running for president. George P. Bush won the job of Texas Land Commissioner in 2014 and was reelected in 2018.

But Bush’s star power has faded in recent years. In 2016, Jeb Bush walked out of the presidential primary race ahead of the Texas primary, which Senator Ted Cruz won. In 2020, George P. Bush’s cousin Pierce Bush lost the GOP congressional primary in the 22nd district. The loss of George P. Bush likely marks the end of the most successful political dynasty in American and Texas history. Ken Paxton beats George P. Bush in race for Texas Attorney General

Bobby Allyn

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