Texas is changing, and that might be bad news for Republicans, Politico reports.
Shifting demographics and a "suburban revolt" against President Trump have turned the Lone Star state into a real political battleground, in which Democrats are making substantial gains for the first time a long time. Politico reports that there are at least eight House seats that should be up for grabs, and Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) is "bracing for a competitive re-election race."
Latinos are on pace to become the largest population group in the state by 2022, a fact which outgoing Rep. Will Hurd (R-Texas), one of three Republican congressmen in the state to recently announce their retirement and the only black GOP member of Congress, said signals that the party needs to change along with the times. "If the Republican Party in Texas doesn't start looking like Texas, there won't be a Republican Party in Texas," he told Politico.
Hurd, the only Republican in the state to represent a border town, said that he was able to hang onto his district (which voted for Hillary Clinton in the 2016 general election) by engaging with minority communities in the area. Other candidates would presumably need to do more of the same in what Hurd says is now a "purple state." But he also said it won't be easy, especially in light of President Trump's recent rhetoric directed at four congresswomen of color, as well as his attacks on Baltimore.
"That kind of rhetoric hurts when you're trying to take a message to a group of people," Hurd said. Read more about Texas' political metamorphosis at Politico. Tim O'Donnell