The Dallas Morning News

Giddings’ seat could be decided March 6

Only Democrats in hunt for District 109; Dallas ballots packed

- By RAY LESZCYNSKI and ELVIA LIMÓN Staff Writers

Two longtime state representa­tives are stepping down in Dallas County and one successor could be determined as soon as March 6.

That’s the day Dallas County voters will go to the polls to decide five contested Republican state House primaries. The county ballot has seven contested races on the Democrats’ side.

With no Republican or even a Libertaria­n in the race, the four Democrats vying for the District 109 primary have a direct line to succeed 13-term state Rep. Helen Giddings, DDeSoto.

The seat that represents all or part of Dallas, Cedar Hill, Ferris, Glenn Heights, Hutchins, Lancaster, Ovilla and Wilmer could very well stay with a DeSoto resident. The two most experience­d among four in the race are DeSoto City Council member Deshaundra Lockhart Jones, 47, and former DeSoto Mayor Carl Sherman, 51.

Both said that their work as nonpartisa­n council members would help them reach across the aisle as outnumbere­d Democrats in Austin.

“The citizens decide who is elected, and it is my job to work side-by-side with any of them,” said Lockhart Jones, a thirdterm council member.

Sherman also cites his experience on the staff side, regardless of political backing. He was city manager in Ferris and is now Hutchins’ top administra­tor. He also has Giddings’ endorsemen­t.

Sherman wants developmen­t for the area other than fast food restaurant­s, self-storage

and dollar stores that he says “are not evil in and of themselves, but there is a saturation.”

Christophe­r Graham, 37, a Dallas attorney who specialize­s in representi­ng indigent people accused of crimes, also seeks the seat as does Victoria Walton, 60, of Lancaster, who is selfemploy­ed.

District 113

In Garland, Mesquite, Rowlett and southeast parts of Dallas County, three Republican­s and two Democrats are vying for the District 113 seat being vacated as Cindy Burkett, R-Sunnyvale, seeks a state Senate seat.

Jonathan Boos, 33, of Garland is making his second run at the House seat. With 300 in-district donors and $57,000 cash on hand going into the stretch run, he may be in a far better position than when he challenged Burkett’s run at a fourth term in 2016.

“We have a very large cashon-hand advantage, which will enable us to operate a very robust voter contact and get-outthe-vote operation in the last month of the race,” Boos said in a written statement.

Charlie Lauersdorf, 35, of Rowlett touts his experience as a small business owner and a Marine staff sergeant. He believes the upcoming session is the best chance to fix the state’s school financing imbalances.

“Meaningful change. Not putting a Band-Aid on it,” Lauersdorf said during a meeting with editorial board. “We’re seeing unpreceden­ted growth. If we can’t fix it now, I don’t think we’ll ever be able to.”

Sunnyvale Mayor Jim Phaup, 64, a manufactur­ing executive, says the state has to take on a more meaningful share — 50 percent or more — of the cost of education. He is also in favor of eliminatin­g the business franchise tax.

In the District 113 Democratic primary, substitute teacher Rhetta Andrews Bowers, 50, seeks her second consecutiv­e nomination. She is opposed by retired firefighte­r Billy Ingram, 58. Both live in Rowlett.

District 108

Two Democrats are battling for a spot in the District 108 race, which includes the Park Cities, Uptown and part of downtown Dallas.

Zac Duffy, a 39-year-old lawyer who specialize­s in intellectu­al property law, is running against Joanna Cattanach, 37, an educator and writer. The winner will face Republican incumbent Morgan Meyer.

Republican state Rep. Jason Villalba, 46, an attorney for Gardere Wynne Sewell, is seeking his fourth term in District 114, which covers North Dallas and Lake Highlands. His challenger is 57-year-old Lisa Luby Ryan, owner of an interior design firm.

The winner will face Democratic candidate John Turner, who is unopposed in the primary.

District 105

A.D. Jenkins and Terry Meza seek to win the Democratic seat for District 105. The district covers Irving and parts of Grand Prairie.

Jenkins, 49, is an Irving school board member and IBM software engineer. He says his experience as a school trustee makes him an ideal representa­tive for the district.

Meza, 68, an attorney, said her 40 years as a volunteer in Irving and Grand Prairie has given her great insight into what Irving and Grand Prairie residents need and care about.

GOP House member Rodney Anderson, 49, a title insurance company executive, faces 72-year-old engineer Dinesh Mali in District 105.

Incumbent challenges

Three Republican­s are battling in District 107, which includes Lakewood and eastern portions of Dallas, southern Garland and most of Mesquite. The winner will face incumbent Victoria Neave, D-Dallas, in November.

Deana Maria Metzger’s supporters showed up en masse at a town hall meeting Neave hosted in November to discuss the LBJ East project. They came to oppose the plan to use revenue from tolled lanes to fund the $1.8 billion project that is mostly in the district.

Two Dallas men are running for the nomination opposite Metzger, 45, a businesswo­man from Mesquite. Brad Perry, 27, is an attorney who works for a nonprofit group. Joe Ruzicka, 44, is in the aviation industry.

Among other Dallas County incumbents facing primary challenges, Eric Johnson, 42, is challenged in District 100, which is in Dallas and a small part of Mesquite. The incumbent Democrat faces Sandra Crenshaw, 64, a former Dallas City Council member.

Republican incumbent Linda Koop, 67, faces business owner Chad Carnahan, 66, and network engineer Scott Kilgore, 23, in District 102, which includes parts of North Dallas, Addison, Garland and Richardson.

Republican incumbent Matt Rinaldi awaits the winner of the Democratic primary between Rock Bower and Julie Johnson in District 115, which includes parts of Addison, Carrollton, Coppell, Farmers Branch and Irving. Bower, 31, is an attorney. Johnson, 51, is a business owner.

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