Austin, TX — Democratic Incumbent Sen. Eddie Lucio, Jr. appears headed to a runoff with Sara Stapleton-Barrera in Texas Senate District 27. The latest results have Sen. Lucio with 49.78 percent of the vote, just shy of the 50.0 percent needed to win without a runoff. Planned Parenthood Texas Votes endorsed against Lucio for his aggressively anti-reproductive health and rights record.
Planned Parenthood Texas Votes PAC ran a robust campaign with the tagline “Sucio Lucio,” calling out the senator for his “dirty politics.” During early vote, PPTV PAC contacted over 50,000 voters in the Rio Grande Valley through digital ads, text messages, phone calls, billboards and local outreach events. Lucio spent $1.1 million over the course of the campaign since last July, including nearly $100,000 on a campaign kickoff event. (See photos below of PPTV campaign.)
Reproductive health and rights have been under constant attack by extremist politicians for more than a decade in Texas. In the 2019 legislative session, anti-choice legislators passed Senate Bill 22 — the local Planned Parenthood ban— which prohibits local governments from partnering with Planned Parenthood for essential health care services, education and outreach and Senate Bill 24, authored by Sen. Lucio, that forces health care providers to give false and misleading information to people seeking an abortion.
Additionally, two challengers and several long-time Planned Parenthood champions declared an overwhelming victory in the Democratic Primary Election. A pro-choice majority in the Texas House is within reach in 2020 and will be a critical step towards protecting reproductive health and rights during the next legislative session.
Statement from Dyana Limon-Mercado, Executive Director, Planned Parenthood Texas Votes
SEN. LUCIO TO FACE LIKELY RUNOFF IN TEXAS SD 27
“Women and young people made their voices heard in the Rio Grande Valley last night and we are proud to have worked alongside young community activists and leaders in the RGV to help push this race into a runoff. Sen. Lucio’s policies and positions are outdated and out-of-touch. It is a new day in Texas politics, and voters are not settling for the status quo. This new generation of advocates and voters are holding politicians accountable and demanding representation for all.
“Sara Stapleton-Barrera, a former trial attorney and working mother, has pledged 100 percent support for reproductive health and rights, including safe, legal abortion. Sara is a progressive leader, with a fresh perspective, who is deeply committed to standing up for Planned Parenthood patients and health centers in the Rio Grande Valley and reversing the dangerous and discriminatory policies that Sen. Lucio has advanced for the last three decades. Sara will fight for critical health care access and the reproductive rights of her constituents at a time when true champions are desperately needed and, if elected, she would be the first woman to ever represent the district.”
FULL LIST OF ENDORSED WINNERS:
Elizabeth Beck (HD 97)
Natali Hurtado (HD 126)
Rep. Ron Reynolds (HD 27)
Rep. Erin Zwiener (HD 45)
Rep. Eddie Rodriguez (HD 51)
Rep. Michelle Beckley (HD 65)
Rep. Trey Martinez Fischer (HD 116)
Rep. Jarvis Johnson (HD 139)
Rep. Senfronia Thompson (HD 141)
DEMOCRATIC CHALLENGERS BECK, HURTADO CLAIM VICTORY
“We are also celebrating the wins of Democratic challengers and Planned Parenthood Texas Votes endorsed candidates Elizabeth Beck in Texas House District 97 and Natali Hurtado in Texas House District 126.
“Both Elizabeth and Natali are bold leaders who will help defeat dangerous anti-choice legislation brought in the Texas House and give a voice to Planned Parenthood patients. Elizabeth, a veteran, lawyer and member of the Planned Parenthood of Greater Texas Fort Worth Community Board, knows first-hand how much her community relies on access to non-judgemental, high-quality, affordable health care services. Natali, a public policy professional, current deputy director of a local management district and former Planned Parenthood patient, has made defending reproductive health and rights an integral part of her platform.”
LONG-TIME PLANNED PARENTHOOD CHAMPIONS WIN IN PRIMARY
“The incumbents who won tonight have all demonstrated unwavering commitment to Planned Parenthood patients and to protecting reproductive rights for all Texans in the face of constant attacks by anti-choice extremists in the legislature.
"These leaders and Planned Parenthood Texas Votes have been partners in the progressive movement that has been growing and building power in Texas over the past decade. In 2020 there is a real opportunity to elect a majority of pro-choice members to the Texas House. Protecting House seats held by some of our most steadfast advocates who will continue to fight for Planned Parenthood patients and health centers is the foundation of our winning strategy.”