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Another Houston area Democrat surpasses $1M

October 11, 2018

Yet another Texas Democrat in Houston running for Congress has surpassed $1 million in fundraising.

Houston Democrat Todd Litton will report to the Federal Election Commission that he pulled in $466,000 over the last three months and now has raised a total of $1.3 million in his race in Houston’s 2nd Congressional District.

Litton, a lawyer who works with education nonprofits, is battling Republican Dan Crenshaw in a district that includes parts of West Houston, reaches north to the Montgomery County line and wraps over to the east to include Humble and Atascocita. Litton and Crenshaw are vying to replace retiring U.S. Rep. Ted Poe, R-Atascocita.

Crenshaw, a retired Navy SEAL, has raised just over $500,000 over the past three months and has collected about $1.5 million overall in his bid for the seat.

Seven Texas Democrats seeking congressional seats have now topped $1 million, a milestone that is significant because the average amount of money spent by winning candidates for the U.S. House is just over $1.4 million over the past four years.

There are now three Congressional races in Houston that have contests in which both the Democrat and the Republican have topped $1 million. In the 7th Congressional District, U.S. Rep. John Culberson, R-Houston, and Democrat Lizzie Fletcher have each raised more than $2 million.

Further south, U.S. Rep. Pete Olson, R-Sugar Land, and Democrat Sri Preston Kulkarni have also both topped $1 million in the 22nd Congressional District, which includes parts of Harris, Fort Bend and Brazoria counties.

What is happening in Houston is abnormal compared to other races around the nation. Democratic challengers for Congress nationwide on average have raised just about $300,000 according the Center for Responsive Politics in the general election.

Democrats have put a big emphasis on winning seats in the Houston area during the midterm elections, partly due to how well Democrat Hillary Clinton did in Harris County in 2016 in her race against President Donald Trump.

Despite losing Texas overall, Clinton won Harris County, 54 to 42 percent, and Fort Bend County, 51 percent to 45 percent. Those numbers have made the 7th Congressional District one of the most competitive battles in the nation. And the races for Congressional Districts 22 and 2 are considered among the 100 or so most competitive races for Congress by many experts.

jeremy.wallace@chron.com

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