Runoff wrap-up: Jenkins wins easily, Villarreal stuns Cortes, Gonzalez tops Chavez in El Paso

Will Naomi Gonzalez, shown flashing the victory sign last night, become the only openly LGBT legislator in Texas.
Will Naomi Gonzalez, shown flashing the victory sign last night, become the only openly LGBT legislator in Texas? (El Paso Times)

Attorney Clay Jenkins handily defeated former City Councilman Larry Duncan in the race for the Democratic nomination for Dallas County judge last night. Duncan was endorsed by Stonewall Democrats of Dallas, but Jenkins also had his share of LGBT backers. Jenkins will face Republican Wade Emmert in November as they vie to succeed openly gay incumbent Jim Foster.

The surprise of the night locally came in the Dallas County Precinct 5 constable race, where Beth Villarreal knocked off embattled incumbent Jaime Cortes. Precinct 5, which covers the city’s most heavily LGBT neighborhoods, once was represented by openly gay Constable Mike Dupree. Villarreal has a gay son and has enjoyed strong support in the LGBT community, partly due to allegations of gay-baiting against Cortes when he challenged Dupree in previous election cycles.

In El Paso, challenger Naomi Gonzalez defeated incumbent State Rep. Norma Chavez. Chavez, in an apparent act of desperation, publicly called Gonzalez a lesbian during the campaign and said she should come out. If Gonzalez does now come out, she would be the only openly LGBT legislator in Texas, one of 20 states that lack one. There is no Republican in the race.

And in Gainesville, Fla., openly gay City Commissioner Craig Lowe faces a recount before he can be declared mayor-elect, after he edged out his opponent by just 35 votes on Tuesday. Lowe, who endured vicious anti-gay attacks during the campaign, would become one of about 30 out mayors nationwide.

—  John Wright

Gainesville, Fla., appears to have narrowly elected a gay mayor, but there will be a recount

Gainesville, Fla., home to my alma mater the University of Florida, has apparently elected an openly gay mayor. Craig Lowe, who endured vicious anti-gay attacks during the race, edged out Don Marsh in a runoff today by just 35 votes, The Gainesville Sun reports. There will be an automatic recount, since Lowe won by less than 0.5 percent.

—  John Wright

Attacks on Gainesville's gay mayoral candidate

Openly gay man Craig Lowe has advanced to a runoff in the race for mayor of Gainesville, Fla., and the righteous people of Dove Ministries in Gainesville are furious about it.

They’ve put a sign up in front of the church that says “No Homo Mayor,” and their pastor, Wayne Sapp, has posted a video online in which he rants against Lowe’s efforts to turn Gainesville into “Homoville” and against the other churches in town that refused to participate with Dove Ministries in a protest against any homos being elected to office in their fair city.

You can watch the video below (be prepared to get riled up), and then go here and read Waymon Hudson’s post on Bilerico.com.

—  admin