Trump Wins, Dallas County Gets a Shade Bluer and Arlington Votes for a Stadium: Your 2016 Election Roundup
Voters queue at the George Allen Courthouse downtown Tuesday night, less than an hour before polls closed.
In the end, Tuesday night's election results in North Texas appear to have been affected very little by the night's national trend. Disaffected white voters throughout the south and Rust Belt banded together in an effort to, as Donald Trump would call it, drain the swamp in Washington.
Republicans held the senate, and Trump was elected with a wide electoral college margin, despite struggling in Republican strongholds like Texas, which he won by just 10 points, a five point decrease from Mitt Romney's margin in 2012.
Much of the change was baked into Texas' final results by the state's major metropolitan areas, including Dallas, getting even more Democratic than they were already. As the United States awakes to President-elect Trump, let's take a look at how well he did in Dallas County, along with the three other local races we targeted as elections to watch a couple of weeks ago.
Arlington Keeps the Rangers for the Foreseeable Future — Despite polling from opponents that showed Arlington voters were evenly split, the Texas Rangers won an easy victory Tuesday night. They'll get their new, taxpayer funded, retractable-roofed ballpark in time for the 2021 season, which will start before their current stadium, Globe Life Park, is even 40 years old. The team, and stadium proponents like Arlington's mayor, Jeff Williams, said a new park was essential to keeping the Rangers in Arlington and keeping them competitive during DFW's brutal summers. Voters agreed by about a two-to-one margin.
“It’s a phenomenal thing how so many generations now have grown up going to the Texas Rangers here in Arlington,” Williams told the assembled crowd at a pro-stadium watch party. “Now we have an opportunity for us to say that we want the Rangers to be here for our kids and grandkids."
Jon Daniels, the Rangers general manager, said the new stadium might be the key to the Rangers' first ever World Series title.
"A new ballpark will be a great benefit for our fans and our players. It will provide us with a state-of-the art year-round training facility that will be the best in Major League Baseball and will assist us in the quest to bring a World Championship to this great city," Daniels said in a statement. "This is a very exciting time for the City of Arlington and the Rangers organization."
The deal will keep the Rangers in Arlington through at least 2053.
Hillary Clinton Dominates in Dallas County — Hillary Clinton's performance in Dallas County confirmed early voting trends, as she handily bettered President Obama's performance in the county four years ago. Clinton beat Trump by 26 points, 61-35, in Dallas County. In 2012, Obama won the county by just 15 points, 57-42.
Overall, turnout in the county for the top-line race was a tick over 750,000, up from a little under 712,000 four years ago. As of early Wednesday almost 8.9 million Texans saw their votes counted for president, a million vote uptick from 2012. Texas, the white whale of potential purple states, appears headed that way, maybe as early as 2020.
“We know that Texas Republicans designed discriminatory legislative maps to hold Latino, African-American, and Texas diverse majority from having a real voice in who represents them in Austin," Texas Democratic Party Chair Gilberto Hinojosa said Tuesday. "Nonetheless, Texas Democrats took a strong step forward tonight.”
Dallas Votes to Fix Its Pensions — Voters in the city of Dallas voted overwhelmingly to accept proposed changes to the city's pension plan for non-uniformed employees, 69-31. The city will now raise its employee retirement age from 60 to 65 and changes will be made to the way benefits are calculated. The city believes it will save $2.5 billion as a result of the vote, which will only apply to employees hired on Jan. 1, 2017 or later.
Kenneth Sheets Goes Down — Texas state Representative Kenneth Sheets, the Republican incumbent in an East Dallas district that is Democrat-friendly in presidential years, lost his seat to attorney Victoria Neave. Neave claimed victory Tuesday, despite leading by just 828 votes with all 52 of District 107's precincts reporting.
"I got in this race because I believe every Texan deserves a chance to get ahead," Neave said in a statement. "We deserve leaders who understand that education is the greatest gift and that working class values are Texas values."
Neave's win was one of five Texas House seat pickup for Democrats.
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