Hometown News For Orange County, Texas

Phelan-Covey runoff ends with Tuesday election

Tuesday, May 28, is the date of the runoff race for the Texas House District 21 that includes Orange County. The only registered voters who cannot cast a ballot in the runoff are the 981 who voted in the March Democratic primary.

The race is between incumbent Dade Phelan of Beaumont, who is the powerful Texas Speaker of the House, lost the vote to David Covey of Orange in March. A third candidate forced the runoff.

After two days of early voting on Monday, May 20, and Tuesday, May 22, a total of 3,471 ballots had been cast in Orange County, according to the county elections administration office. The district also includes part of Jefferson County plus Jasper County.

The third candidate is backing Covey. Phelan's re-election will depend on a large voter turnout, which is unusual for a party primary runoff.

Though the race is in the Republican Party primary, the winner will win the seat in the Texas Legislature because no Democrats run for local offices. The winner will be unopposed in the November general election.

The race has attracted national attention with former President Donald Trump endorsing Covey, along with Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton. Trump recently said he would appoint Paxton as U.S. attorney general if he wins office again.

Phelan has gained the endorsement of many public officials in Orange County. Last summer, he led a Texas House hearing and vote to impeach Paxton regarding allegations from attorney whistleblowers in Paxton's office who won a lawsuit against the attorney general. The house passed the impeachment, but the Texas Senate, led by Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick, rejected impeachment. Patrick has also endorsed Covey.

Early voting will continue Wednesday May 22, Thursday May 23, and Friday May 24 from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Early voting sites are at the Orange Public Library, 220 North Fifth Street in downtown Orange; the Mauriceville Community Center, 7741 Cohenour Road in Mauriceville; Orange County Airport, 2640 Highway 87 South between Bridge City and Orange; and Raymond Gould Community Center, 385 Claiborne Street in Vidor.

Any registered Orange County voter with proper identification may vote at any of the early voting sites and the polling spots on Election Day.

Election Day hours are 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. The sites are Orange Public Library, LCM Administration Building, Orange St. Francis Catholic Church, Sabine River Authority Headquarters, Salvation Army, Orange County Expo Center, Mauriceville Community Center, Bridge City Knights of Columbus Hall, Bridge City St. Paul Methodist Church, Orangefield's Cormier Museum, Vidor Raymond Gould Community Center, Vidor ISD Administration Building, Pecan Acres Baptist Church, and Pine Forest Baptist Church.


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