With the runoffs decided, stage is set for the November election in Texas

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The final Republican and Democratic primary contests in Texas were decided on Tuesday, rounding out the general election ballot for both major parties.

Republicans are aiming to further cement their control of state politics and fend off challenges from Democrats, who are seeking to win a statewide election for the first time in nearly three decades.

Here's a look at the statewide match-ups Texas voters will see on their ballots in November:

Democrat Beto O'Rourke, left, and Gov. Greg Abbott
Democrat Beto O'Rourke, left, and Gov. Greg Abbott

Governor: Greg Abbott vs. Beto O’Rourke

The marquee race is at the top of the ticket. Republican Gov. Greg Abbott is seeking a third term and is facing a challenge from Democrat Beto O’Rourke, a former El Paso congressman who lost a U.S. Senate bid and bowed out of the 2020 presidential race.

Both candidates are political heavyweights in their own right, with reputations as prolific fundraisers who can mobilize their respective bases.

Republicans are eager to deny O’Rourke a victory for the third time in as many election cycles, while Democrats are betting on O’Rourke to close the gap and prove the party still has a fighting chance at winning a statewide election.

More: Greg Abbott campaign promises 'knock-out, drag-out fight' in race against Beto O'Rourke

In March, Abbott’s team promised a high-dollar campaign and a tough-fought election. In the months since, both Abbott and O’Rourke have been on the attack.

Abbott’s campaign has worked to paint O’Rourke as a radical liberal who is out of touch with the needs of everyday Texans. The governor has attacked O’Rourke’s stance on the border and gun control — frequently reminding voters of a now infamous remark O’Rourke made at a debate during his short-lived campaign for president.

“Hell yes, we're going to take your AR-15, your AK-47," O’Rourke said during the debate. “We're not going to allow it to be used against our fellow Americans anymore."

More: Beto O'Rourke is campaigning on last year's power outage. But is it a winning issue?

For his part, O’Rourke has oscillated his focus on different issues in the race, looking to turn outrage into mobilization over last year’s deadly winter storms, reports of abuse at state facilities charged with caring for foster children, and Abbott’s actions at the border.

His latest focus has been abortion, in light of a recent leak of a draft majority opinion from the U.S. Supreme Court indicating that justices are poised to overturn Roe v. Wade, the 1973 landmark decision that established a constitutional right to abortion.

O’Rourke has criticized Abbott for signing into law one of the nation’s strictest abortion laws, which prohibits the procedure after six weeks of pregnancy.

More: Will fight for abortion rights translate to Democratic votes in November?

Attorney General Ken Paxton with his wife, Sen. Angela Paxton, revels in his runoff victory over George P. Bush in the Republican primary on May 24, 2022.
Attorney General Ken Paxton with his wife, Sen. Angela Paxton, revels in his runoff victory over George P. Bush in the Republican primary on May 24, 2022.

Attorney general: Ken Paxton vs. Rochelle Garza

Embattled Attorney General Ken Paxton cruised to victory over Land Commissioner George P. Bush during their closely watched runoff election for attorney general.

Paxton, who was endorsed by former President Donald Trump, will face Rochelle Garza, a former ACLU of Texas lawyer, in November.

Garza easily defeated Joe Jaworski, former Galveston mayor and grandson of Watergate special prosecutor Leon Jaworski, in the Democratic runoff.

Paxton — who has been charged with two counts of securities fraud and one count of failing to register with state securities regulators based on private business deals from 2010 and 2011 — emphasized his lawsuits against the Biden administration during the campaign and said Tuesday that he’s locked into “the fight to save our country.”

More: Ken Paxton defeats George P. Bush in Texas Republican primary runoff for attorney general

"I had the chance to again travel the state and just connect to people who realize this country is in trouble,” Paxton said during a victory celebration in Cedar Park. “We're in trouble but we have hope. We have a state that will fight and who will elect leaders who will go fight, and the entire reason I decided to run for another term was so we could go fight together." 

Rochelle Garza
Rochelle Garza

Garza focused her election night remarks on Paxton, stating that the incumbent is “corrupt and unfit to hold public office and cares more about lobbyists and donors than the lives of our children.”

“He has abused the AG office for political gain and forgotten the struggles of everyday Texans,” she said in a statement. “That changes once we vote him out in November.”

Lieutenant governor: Dan Patrick vs. Mike Collier

The race for lieutenant governor will be a rematch between Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick and Democrat Mike Collier, who first challenged the Republican incumbent in 2018.

Patrick won his primary outright, and Collier secured the Democratic Party nomination during a runoff Tuesday.

Collier, an accountant and former chief financial officer of an oil company, came within 4.9 points of unseating Patrick in 2018 and has been itching for a rematch in the years since.

“This November, Texans will have to answer one simple question: are they better off now than they were eight years ago?” Collier said in a statement. “With exploding property taxes, chaos at the border, a rickety power grid, our public schools suffering, and our constitutional rights under assault, the fact is Texas cannot bear four more years of Dan Patrick. And after the tragic events of today, we are reminded once again we can and must do better for the people of Texas.”

More: Texas Gov. Greg Abbott stops short of backing Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick's idea to end tenure

Railroad commissioner: Wayne Christian vs. Luke Warford

Wayne Christian fended off a challenge from Sarah Stogner in the Republican runoff Tuesday, clearing the path for him to continue his bid for reelection to the Railroad Commission, which regulates the state’s oil and gas industry.

Christian will face Democrat Luke Warford, who has worked in energy consulting, technology and politics.

Christian has served for more than five years on the three-person panel.

More: 'The unicorn lawyer' is shaking up this GOP race on TikTok. Will voters notice?

Christian and the other commissioners have faced searing criticism over the past year for the role natural gas producers played in widespread blackouts during the deadly February 2021 freeze.

"It's been the honor of my life to serve as our state’s 50th Railroad Commissioner," Christian said in a tweet. "I look forward to continue fighting for cheap, plentiful, reliable energy, as we stand up to the Biden’s radical liberal agenda."

Warford, who worked as an organizer with the Obama campaign in Ohio and for the Clinton campaign in 2016, said the freeze that crippled much of Texas inspired him to run for office.

Agriculture commissioner: Sid Miller vs. Susan Hays

Two-term incumbent Sid Miller will face Democrat Susan Hays in November, after he fended off a primary challenge from state Rep. James White, R-Hillister, earlier this year.

Miller, who has been endorsed by Trump, is known for his inflammatory remarks and social media posts. The dominant issue of his primary campaign was the indictment of Miller's longtime political adviser amid allegations of soliciting bribes in exchange for hemp licenses from the state agency.

Hays is an attorney whose recent focus includes cannabis. She was a key force in drafting a 2019 state law authorizing the production, manufacture and retail sale of hemp crops and products.

More: Despite high demand for beef, it's a tough time to be a Texas cattle rancher. Here's why many are reducing herds.

Land commissioner: Dawn Buckingham vs. Jay Kleberg

Republican Dawn Buckingham and Democrat Jay Kleberg secured their respective parties’ nominations for Texas land commissioner on Tuesday and will go head-to-head in November.

The Texas land commissioner heads the General Land Office, which is tasked with stewarding public lands and related efforts such as distributing disaster relief funds, state veteran programs and public school funding from the lease of state lands.

In recent years, the General Land Office has gained attention for its role in the management of the Alamo as some questioned redevelopment plans for the tourist attraction and the framing of the historic site in Texas history.

Buckingham is a state senator from Lakeway, and Kleberg is a conservationist and filmmaker who is part of the family that has owned the famous King Ranch in South Texas for generations. He lives in Austin.

More: Jay Kleberg of Texas' King Ranch family is running for land commissioner as a Democrat

Comptroller: Glenn Hegar vs. Janet Dudding

Democrat Janet Dudding won Tuesday’s runoff for Texas comptroller of public accounts and will face-off against incumbent Republican Glenn Hegar in November.

The comptroller is responsible for tax collection and produces revenue projections for state lawmakers as they craft the state’s biennial budget.

This article originally appeared on Austin American-Statesman: Democratic, Republican ballots set for Texas November general election