Election 2020

With Tom Ramsey Win, Harris County Dems Fail To Gain Commissioners Court Supermajority

Democrats already had a 3-2 majority on the court, but a minority of commissioners can still block legislation in extraordinary circumstances.

Republican candidate Tom Ramsey defeated Democrat Michael Moore for Harris County Commissioner Precinct 3.

Republican Tom Ramsey won the race for Harris County Precinct 3 Commissioner, failing to give Democrats a Commissioners Court supermajority.

Ramsey had secured roughly 52% of the vote against Democratic challenger Michael Moore as of 11 p.m., replacing longtime Republican Commissioner Steve Radack who held the position for more than 30 years.

Ramsey, the Spring Valley Village Mayor, was endorsed by Radack.

Democrats already had a 3-2 majority on the court, but a minority of commissioners can still block legislation in extraordinary circumstances.

Last year, before a state law went into effect limiting the rate at which counties can raise taxes, County Judge Lina Hidalgo and Democrats on the court were prepared to vote for an 8% increase. To block the move, Republicans Radack and Jack Cagle refused to show up for the vote — denying Democrats the number of commissioners necessary to vote under Texas law.

Precinct 3, which stretches across western Harris County, has long been a Republican stronghold, but changing demographics have put it in play in recent years, Rice University political science Prof. Bob Stein previously told Houston Public Media.

“The area has become more Democratic," Stein said. "The area has become more Hispanic. And the area has become more concerned about issues that directly relate to things that, maybe not commissioners do but have a partisan character to them – COVID, of course, and the recession that came from it."

Share

Andrew Schneider

Andrew Schneider

Politics and Government Reporter

Andrew heads Houston Public Media’s coverage of national, state, and local elections. He also reports on major policy issues before the Texas Legislature and county and city governments across Greater Houston. Before taking up his current post, Andrew spent five years as Houston Public Media’s business reporter, covering the oil...

More Information