LaMantia edges out Hinojosa: District 27 state Senate race was a squeaker

State Senate District 27 candidate Morgan LaMantia is pictured Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2022, outside the polling location at the Bowie Elementary School in Harlingen. (Denise Cathey/The Brownsville Herald)

According to unofficial results Wednesday morning from the Texas Secretary of State, Democrat Morgan LaMantia won the Texas Senate District 27 against Republican candidate Adam Hinojosa — but not by much.

The total from District 27’s eight counties with 100 percent of precincts reporting was 87,860 votes (50.2 percent) for LaMantia and 87,291 (49.8 percent) for Hinojosa, a difference of 569 votes.

Redistricting by state Republicans last year, which added Bee, Nueces and San Patricio counties to District 27 on top of Cameron, Hidalgo, Kleberg and Willacy counties, made it an uphill battle for LaMantia, who voters chose over Hinojosa only in Cameron, Hidalgo and Willacy and despite outspending Hinojosa significantly.

In Cameron County, LaMantia won by 41,580 votes (55.2 percent) to Hinojosa’s 33,800 (44.8 percent).

In Hidalgo County it was 26,421 (62.2 percent) to 16,060 (37.8 percent).

Willacy County unofficial results showed LaMantia beating Hinojosa 2,174 (58.4 percent) to 1,551 (41,6 percent).

In the counties farther north, Bee, Kenedy, Kleberg, Nueces and San Patricio counties, Hinojosa defeated LaMantia 69.8 percent to 30.2 percent in Bee; 72.2 percent to 27.3 percent in Kenedy; 55.9 percent to 44.1 percent in Kleberg; 67.9 percent to 32.1 percent Nueces; and 69.5 percent to 30.5 percent in San Patricio.

Total turnout among eligible voters in the eight counties was 35.1 percent.

LaMantia defeated Sara Stapleton Barrera in the May 24 Democratic primary runoff election, while Hinojosa, a Corpus Christi resident and business owner, bested Raul Torres and Isreal Salinas in the March 1 Republican primary.

Sen. Eddie Lucio Jr. has held the District 27 seat since 1991, but last year announced his decision to retire rather than run for another term.

And while Lucio, a conservative Democrat, has often sided with Republicans in the Legislature and endorsed his friend Dan Patrick for lieutenant governor instead of the Democratic candidate Mike Collier, he endorsed LaMantia as his successor early this year during her runoff battle with Stapleton Barrera.

LaMantia, a resident of South Padre Island and an attorney employed by her family’s business, McAllen-based L&F Distributors, has carried a substantial war chest during the campaign, having raised nearly $1 million in total donations between Jan. 1, 2021 and Oct. 29, 2022, and spent $5.7 million, according to

Texas Senate candidate Adam Hinojosa campaigns Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2022, in Brownsville, Texas on Election Day. (Miguel Roberts/The Brownsville Herald via AP)

Hinojosa had raised $877,752 in donations and spent $411,236 as of last report.

Neither of the two candidates could be reached for comment Wednesday morning.

In the District 20 state Senate race, Democratic incumbent Sen. Juan “Chuy” Hinojosa won 101,989 votes (59.15 percent) to Republican challenger Westley Wright’s 101,989 votes (40.85 percent), according to unofficial results from the Secretary of State.

In the Texas House race for District 35, Democratic incumbent Oscar Longoria beat Republican opponent Oscar Rosa with 67.3 percent of the vote.

For state House District 39, Democratic incumbent Armando “Mando” Martinez prevailed against Republican Jimmie Garcia with 64.6 percent of the vote.

In the state House District 41 contest, incumbent Democrat Guerra vanquished Republican challenger John “Doc” Robert Guerra with nearly 57 percent of the vote.

In the District 37 state House race, Republican Janie Lopez beat Democratic incumbent Luis Villarreal Jr. with nearly 53 percent of the vote.