TX-Sen: MJ Hegar (D) Leads In Both Polling & Fundraising In The Democratic Primary

Here’s some more news out of Texas:

On Wednesday, Texas Lyceum released results from its 14th annual poll, identifying Texans' views on the 2020 elections and primaries. Pollsters surveyed 1,000 adults from Texas via telephone.

The results show former Vice President Joe Biden and Sen. Bernie Sanders are essentially tied to win the Democratic presidential nomination among potential Texas Democratic voters. Biden polled at 28% and Sanders at 26% with a margin of error of +/- 4.89%. Senator Elizabeth Warren polled at 13%, former New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg came in at 9%, Mayor Pete Buttigieg got 6% and Senator Amy Klobuchar came in with 4%. The other candidates all received less than 4% and 7% of likely voters polled say they are undecided.

The poll also showed that President Donald Trump holds a 4% to 8% lead over the Democratic candidates among Texas adults. In hypothetical match-ups, Sen. Sanders trails closely behind President Trump at 50% to 47%, while Biden trails by 5 points at 51% to 46%, with a margin of error that's +/-  4.30%.

The poll also looked at the U.S. Senate race for Sen. John Cornyn's seat. The results showed none of the 12 Democratic primary candidates running for U.S. Senate in Texas have earned more than 11% of the vote in the survey.

Army Veteran M.J. Hegar is leading the pack with 11%, followed by state Senator Royce West with 8%. Activist Cristina Tzintzun Ramirez polls at 7% and Houston City Council Member Amanda Edwards has 6%. Michael Cooper, former Congressman Chris Bell, Victor Hugo Harris and Sema Hernandez all polled at 5%, Annie Garcia polled at 4% and Adrian Ocegueda at 2%. None of the likely voters said they would like to see Jack Daniel Foster or D.R. Hunter as the Democratic candidate to face Sen. Cornyn. The poll also showed 17% of the people polled don't support any of the candidates and 19% are unsure. The margin of error is +/- 4.89%

Another poll from Data for Progress has Hegar leading the pack with 18%. Click here for the full results.

Hegar is also the top Democrat to raise the most money:

MJ Hegar, a Democrat seeking to replace U.S. Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, said Tuesday that she raised $1.1 million during the last three months of 2019 and has $1 million in cash on hand.

Hegar, a retired Air Force helicopter pilot from Round Rock, also reported that more than 29,000 donors have contributed to her campaign. A majority of those donors were Texans and nearly all of her donations came in amounts of less than $100, she said.

“We have tapped into the energy and excitement in Texas to build a winning grassroots campaign that is raising millions of dollars from tens of thousands of individuals,” Hegar said in a statement. “I am proud that the strength of our fundraising has enabled us to build out the strongest operation and put us in the best position to meet the demands of a Texas-sized winning Senate race.”

Hegar proved to be a strong fundraiser in 2018 when she raised more money than U.S. Rep. John Carter, R-Round Rock, and came within 3 percentage points of unseating him in a district once considered to be a GOP stronghold.

Here’s some more context:

But Hegar’s fundraising total is far less that what O’Rourke raised at the same point during his Senate primary. The El Paso Democrat raised $2.4 million and had $4.6 million in the bank. O’Rourke went on the raise $80 million in his historic, but losing effort.

Hegar, 43, ran for Congress in 2018 against Republican incumbent John Carter of Round Rock. Though she had a narrow loss to Carter, Hegar opted to challenge Cornyn rather than seek a congressional race rematch.

Her Senate campaign is backed by the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee.

Until this point, Hegar has focused on digital campaigning, but she’s expected to use her resources to expand, including a targeted media campaign that includes television ads.

The Round Rock Democrat’s rivals for the nomination include former U.S. Rep. Chris Bell of Houston, former Houston council member Amanda Edwards, Austin-based labor activist Cristina Tzintzún Ramirez and state Sen. Royce West of Dallas. The race also includes Sema Hernandez of Pasadena, the runner-up to O’Rourke in the 2018 Democratic primary race.

The fact that we have a big primary of candidates that want to go up against Cornyn is encouraging and it’s a nice reminder of how Texas is shaping up to be competitive this year. So let’s keep the focus on this race. Click below to donate and get involved with Texas Democrat of your choice:

MJ Hegar

Chris Bell

Amanda Edwards

Cristina Tzintzún Ramirez

Royce West

Sema Hernandez