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Texas Judge Dismisses GOP Claim; Gallego Expected To Remain On Ballot

State Rep. Pete Gallego, D-Alpine
Ryan Loyd
Texas Public Radio
State Rep. Pete Gallego, D-Alpine, answers questions in English with reporters following an all-Spanish debate. Gallego and Congressman Francisco Canseco are vying for Texas District 23, which runs from El Paso to San Antonio.

A Travis County state judge dismisses Republican claims that the Democratic candidate for Texas Senate District 19 is not a resident of the district.

The Republican Party of Texas was hoping to strike candidate Pete Gallego’s name from the ballot of the Sept. 18 runoff election.

Republican attorneys argued in court Gallego lives with his wife in Austin and not in the district. Residence in the district is a requirement for representing the district in the Texas Legislature.

In court, Gallego’s attorney showed how the former Texas congressman has owned a home and paid the utilities on that same West Texas home near Alpine since 1989, which is within Senate District 19.

Travis County State Judge Tim Sulak said the Republican Party’s claim lacked enough evidence to support removing Gallego’s name temporarily from the ballot.

The court challenge was filed less than a week before the Texas secretary of state was set to certify both Gallego and his Republican opponent Pete Flores name for the runoff election.

Ryan Poppe can be reached at rpoppe@tpr.org or on Twitter @RyanPoppe1