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Flynn, Slaton Runoff Set For GOP HD2 Nomination

Bryan Slaton, left, defeated incumbent Dan Flynn by a roughly 39-point margin in the July 14 Republican Party primary runoff.
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Republicans Bryan Slaton, left, and Dan Flynn are headed to a primary runoff election on May 28.

In today's Northeast Texas, the best way to have a political battle with plenty of support from both sides is to feature two conservative Republicans. That's just what voters in Texas House of Representatives District 2 will find on May 28, the date of a primary runoff election between incumbent Rep. Dan Flynn and challenger Bryan Slaton.

Flynn, of Van, has represented HD2 (Hopkins, Hunt and Van Zandt counties) since 2003. Although very much a man of the right wing – his Facebook page contains regular references to controversial Christian activist David Barton, who endorsed Flynn’s re-election campaign – Flynn has faced primary challenges from other conservative Republicans who accuse Flynn of being too compromised by his decades of rubbing shoulders with the political establishment in Austin.

In 2016 and 2018, Royse City businessman Bryan Slaton narrowly lost to Flynn in those Republican primaries. Both of elections were two-man races. But in last Tuesday’s primary, Flynn fell short of the simple majority necessary to ensure his place on November ballots. Instead, Flynn finished with 44.5 percent of votes cast – good enough for first, but not enough to prevent a runoff. Slaton received 35.2 percent of the vote, while Edom veterinarian and tea party activist Doc Collins, another candidate challenging Flynn from the right, got 20.3 percent.

The Flynn-Slaton race stood out as the only Texas House primary battle on the GOP side in the KETR listening area. Incumbent Republicans Gary VanDeaver (HD1), Keith Bell (HD2), Cole Hefner (HD5), Justin Holland (HD33), Reggie Smith (HD62), Scott Sanford (HD70) and Candy Noble (HD89) were all unopposed. Neither VanDeaver nor Bell will face a Democratic opponent in the fall.

The Democrats in the KETR listening area had one contested race for the Texas House. In House District 89, an increasingly suburbanized district that includes Nevada as well as much of southeastern Collin County, retired attorney Ray Ash defeated accountant Jon Cocks by about 10 points to win the nomination. Democrats who took their party’s nomination uncontested included Bill Brannon (HD2), LaWyanda Prince (HD5), Andy Rose (HD33), Gary D. Thomas (HD62) and Angie Bado (HD70).

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