Attorneys Ben Smith and Barnett Walker pulled off upsets to win hotly-contested judicial races in the Republican Primary runoff on Tuesday.
Smith defeated Terri Green in the District Judges race in the 380th Judicial District. Smith picked up 55.45 percent of the early vote. By the end of the night, 18,822 had voted for Smith, who captured 57.19 percent of the vote. Green drew 14,089 votes.
At his campaign party at Dodie's Place Cajun Bar and Grill in Allen, Smith (pictured with Pastor Bracy Wilson) and his family celebrated the news with friends.
"I am really honored to be selected by the Collin County voters. First and foremost, I would like to thank God for providing for my family these last nine months," Smith told TownSquareBuzz. "I am really looking forward to the challenge. It was an unprecedented turnout for a runoff. I am just really pleased with the results. It means a lot to me and my family."
Smith thanked his wife Rebecca for her support. The couple met as students overseas at Oxford.
"I couldn't have won without her," Smith said.
Rebecca Smith said, "Congratulations to my husband for his victory and for running an amazing campaign. Glory be to God for this victory! It is His and not ours. What some said was impossible was made possible with God!"
Barnett Walker won the race for Judge in County Court at Law Number 2 over Sharon Ramage. Walker had 59.09 percent of the early voting, and won with 59.21 percent in the final totals. Walker received 19,618 votes to 13,513 for Ramage.
Walker's victory party went on into the night at Rock Creek Ranch Event Center.
Jackie Walker said, "Congratulations to my husband, the next Judge Barnett Walker! I'm very proud of you!"
UPSET IN SENATE RACE
Under-dog Ted Cruz and the barely-organized tea parties in Texas patched together a victory over the heavily-favored Dewhurst in the Republican runoff for the U.S. Senate seat vacated by Kay Bailey Hutchison.
Congressman Sam Johnson said, "Congratulations to Ted Cruz on his victory in the U.S. Senate! I look forward to working with Ted in the fight for the conservative cause."
Cruz won Tuesday's runoff with 63.70 percent of the Collin County vote.
"This is a victory for the grassroots," Cruz said on election night in Houston. "We should take it as a providential sign that today would be the 100th birthday of Milton Friedman.
"Millions of Texans, millions of Americans are rising up to reclaim our country, to defend liberty and defend the Constitution," Cruz told the packed gathering at the J.W. Marriott.
The Houston Chronicle reports that Cruz praised God – "To Him be the glory" – and Martin Luther King Jr., and thanked a long list that included Glenn Beck, Sean Hannity, Ron and Rand Paul, Martin Luther King Jr. and even Dewhurst.
COLLIN COUNTY VOTING
In early voting, Ted Cruz won 60.37 percent of the vote in Collin County. He received 26,343 votes in the county by the end of the night.
In November, Cruz will face former State Rep. Paul Sadler, who won Tuesday's runoff over San Antonio teacher Grady Yarbrough. Sadler captured 72.75 percent of the vote in Collin County to win the Democrat runoff for Senate. Sadler won Collin County with 1,311 votes. His opponent received 491 in the county. Cruz had 25,032 more than the Democrat in Collin County.
Conservative radio talk show host Wayne Richard said, "I have to say it's been a long time coming. The true conservative branch of the Republican Party was rewarded with an overwhelming victory at the polls statewide. Not all the right candidates won, in my humble opinion, but we definitely made a statement and a huge step in restoring our Constitutional liberties and our blessed "We the people" form of government. Now I will celebrate with a Chick fil-a sandwich! Our prayers were answered; GOD is good!"
In Collin County, Republican Christi Craddick won her race for a Railroad Commission seat with 65.16 percent in the county, topping Warren Chisum.
"Tonight marks a great victory," Craddick said. "I would like to thank the voters of Texas for electing me as their Republican nominee for Texas Railroad Commissioner. I commend Rep. Warren Chisum for his service to our state, and wish him well in the future. On to the General Election in November!"
Barry Smitherman, with 61.79 percent in Collin County, beat Greg Parker in the second Republican race for Railroad Commissioner.
The race for Supreme Court, Place 4 Justice saw John Devine win Collin County with 53.84 over David Medina.
In the Collin County vote, Tincy Miller beat Gail Spurlock in the race for District 12 member of the State Board of Education with 54.02 percent.
Jeff Leach won over Jon Cole for the State Representative District 67 seat that represents Allen, Plano and Richardson. Leach had 53.37 percent of the early voting and won with 53.39 percent in the county. Leach received 5,545 votes to 4,840 for Cole in the runoff.
"What a tremendous honor and privilege it is to be elected the next State Representative for District 67," Leach said. "It will literally take days to thank all the people I want to thank. For now, for all of you who knocked on doors, worked phone banks, put up yard signs, wore T-shirts, walked in parades, contributed money, encouraged us, voted for us and, most importantly, prayed for us, a sincere thank you on behalf of me and Becky and the rest of Team Leach!
"I also want to thank my opponent Jon Cole and his entire team, all of whom ran a vigorous race over the past several months," Leach said. "Our prayer throughout the campaign - and now as we prepare for serving in the Legislature - is that God would get the Glory, and Texas would get the blessing. I look forward with great anticipation to the challenges and opportunities ahead."
David Evans received the most votes in Collin County for Justice, 5th Court of Appeals District, Place 2. Evans has 59.84. Opponent Bill Whitehill received 12,488 votes in the county. Evans garnered 18,610 votes.
The North Texas Tea Party stated, "Gail Spurlock and Greg Parker both lost their races; both were long shots from the beginning, but we do choose on principle first and winnability second. But otherwise, a great night: Jeff Leach, Ben Smith, Barnett Walker won their local races, Collin County gave Ted Cruz a bigger raw vote margin (11,330) than Dallas County (7,121); and David Evans, John Devine, and Christi Craddick all won through."
Republican Precinct chair races:
Precinct 6 - Thomas Baird 83.23, Dalayr Hight 16.77.
Precinct 15 - Wendy A. McMillon 61.36, Timothy Heeney 38.64.
Precinct 28 - John Bielamowicz 48.47, Amanda Newman 44.17, Apostolos Kyprios 7.36.
Precinct 36 - Aaron S. Kaufman 53.88, Brent Hagenbuch 46.12.
Precinct 38 - Sara Ruppel 51.8, Angela Sokol 48.20.
Precinct 59 - Jim Harper 77.78, Kajsa Keane 22.22.
Precinct 64 - John Myers 81.73, Dan Nolte 18.27.
Precinct 102 - Chris Freeman 70.39, Cissy Oldner 29.61.
Precinct 112 - Greg Myer 64.71, Suzanne Chapman 35.29.
Precinct 116 - Jim Bright 56.09, Mandy Tschoepe 43.91.
Precinct 118 - Todd R. Ramage 55.06, Dennis G. Scharp 44.94.
Precinct 120 - Sally Terrell 60.17, Walt Hannon 39.83.
Precinct 131 - Derek V. Baker 45.70, Cris D. Rude 29.14, Erik A. Hubner 25.17.
Precinct 169 - Joanna Arnold 48.65, Aaron McMahon 32.43, Dan Stalfire 18.92.
Precinct 171 - Joel Miller 69.53, Jerry O. Jones 30.47.
Democrat Precinct chair runoff race, Barbara Barnett won with 77.27 percent of the vote over Mitch Stow.
Photos: Ben Smith with Pastor Bracy Wilson at Dodie's on Tuesday night.