Written By Kate Kahle, Assistant Editor
Voters should be informed about the elections they vote in, and the candidates for which they cast their ballots. This November, several important executive offices in the state of Texas are up for re-election.
The Governor of Texas is the state’s Chief Executive Officer. The Governor of Texas signs bills that have passed through the Texas Legislature into law and has the power to veto bills. The Governor also serves as commander-in-chief of the Texas National Guard, fills certain positions in the Texas State Government through appointment, and approves the budget for the state. Governors serve four-year terms.
Governor Greg Abbott (R) is seeking re-election for a third term. The gubernatorial candidates that will appear on Texas ballots are Greg Abbot (R), Delilah Barrios (G), Beto O’Rourke (D), and Mark Tippetts (L).
In Texas, the Governor and Lieutenant Governor run on separate tickets. The Lieutenant Governor performs gubernatorial duties when the Governor is out-of-state. The Lieutenant Governor is also the President of the Texas Senate and the leader of the Legislative Budget Board. As the President of the Texas Senate, the Lieutenant Governor is in charge of establishing all committees within the Senate, including appointing committee chairpersons and members, and assigning all legislation to the committee of his or her choice. The Lieutenant Governor also serves as one of the five members of the Legislative Redistricting Board. Lieutenant Governors serve four-year terms.
The Attorney General of Texas is the top lawyer for the state. They represent the state in cases, mainly civil, in which the state of Texas is a party. Attorneys General serve four-year terms.
The Texas Agriculture Commissioner directs the Texas Department of Agriculture (TDA). The TDA uses regulation and marketing to pursue its goals of promoting production agriculture, protecting consumers, developing the Texas economy, and encouraging human health. Agriculture Commissioners serve four-year terms.
The Texas Land Commissioner directs the Texas General Land Office (GLO). The GLO has control over 13 million acres of public land, including mineral rights, as well as several Texas landmarks. It also helps with disaster relief funding, public school funding, and funding for veterans’ programs. Land Commissioners serve four-year terms.
The current Texas Land Commissioner George P. Bush is not running for re-election. Land Commissioner candidates Dawn Buckingham (R), Jay Kleberg (D), and Alfred Molison (G) will appear on Texas ballots.
The Texas Comptroller is responsible for the collection of taxes, overseeing the state treasury, and predicting the amount of money legislators should anticipate when they create the budget. Comptrollers serve four-year terms.
Despite its name, the Texas Railroad Commission (TRC) has no authority over railroads. The three-person commission regulates the oil and gas industry in Texas. One seat is up for election this year. Members of the TRC serve six-year, staggered terms. One seat is on the ballot every two years. The Chairman of the TRC is selected by the commissioners.
*denotes candidates without campaign websites.