Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick faces five primary challengers; three Democrats vying for nomination

Todd Bullis, Daniel Miller, Trayce Bradford, Zach Vance and Aaron Sorrells all hope they can beat out the current lieutenant governor for the nomination.
Published: Feb. 18, 2022 at 12:00 PM CST
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WACO, Texas (KWTX) - There is one week left of early voting for the March primaries, and Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick is facing a crowded primary with five other candidates. There are three democratic candidates hoping for the nomination.

Michelle Beckley, Mike Collier and Carla Brailey are on the democratic ticket. Beckley currently serves as a state representative for House District 65 in North Texas, and is a small business owner.

She wants to focus on education, healthcare, the environment and infrastructure, including the electric grid.

Beckley was first elected to her house district in 2018, when she defeated the Republican incumbent. She said that experience will help her against Dan Patrick.

“The reality is it’s going to be very difficult to be beat Dan Patrick,” Beckley said. “And you need a candidate with a history of winning elections as a Democrat with democratic values.”

Mike Collier, who is a CPA, was the Democratic nominee in 2018--he came within 4.8 percentage points of Patrick in the general election.

Collier said he is running because he believes we need a lieutenant governor focused on fixing issues, rather than fighting culture wars.

His priorities include grid reliability and bringing down property taxes. Collier said his experience in business means he is focused on finding pragmatic solutions that can be achieved.

“I think my passion is on solving problems for the state because I love the state and I’m coming out of the business world to do it,” Collier said. “I’m very, very pragmatic.”

Carla Brailey, the former vice chair of the Texas Democratic Party, said her priorities are education, healthcare and gun safety. Brailey said people have a right to exercise the Second Amendment, but it must be done responsibly.

In her time as the vice chair of the party, Brailey said she has gained experience getting Democrats elected around the state. She said her slogan is Texas United.

“No matter where we are in Texas, we have to be united on saving lives and creating quality, high quality of lives that gives everyone a fair shot,” Brailey said. “And that’s what we want to run on.”

Turning to the Republican candidates, Todd Bullis said he’s running because he doesn’t think Republican legislative priorities are being accomplished.

He supports the Republican legislative priorities announced ahead of the 87th session, but in particular, wants make abortion illegal and focus on the border, among others.

Bullis said he won’t compromise on moral issues.

“I’m going to bring back a biblical worldview, everything that we do, we’re going to compare it to the Bible,” Bullis said. “And you know, we’re going to do what’s right, and we’re going to honor God.”

Daniel Miller said he sees a leadership problem in Austin, and that’s why he’s running for lieutenant governor.

He has several priorities, including addressing border security and property taxes. Miller said those are the priorities of Texans, so that’s why he’s focusing on them

He said he has advocated for Texas his entire adult life, including founding the Texas Nationalist Movement.

“I am not green,” Miller said. “Because of this advocacy, I have developed relationships with legislators understand how the process works, and understand how to get things done.”

Trayce Bradford wants to focus on securing the border, education and property taxes. Bradford said she has worked to fight human trafficking for 20 years, and she said that’s something she wants to address right away.

She said she’s running because she believes there is a lack of strong leadership, and she said people want change.

“I’m not attached to a special interest. I don’t have future goals to move from this office on to something else,” Bradford said. “I quite frankly want to get the job done, do it well, honor my word, and go back and be a grandmother at home.”

Zach Vance is running because he wants to see more compromise in government.

He said he wants to focus on education, property taxes, foster care and the border, which he said is a humanitarian crisis.

“I have good ideas. Not all ideas,” Vance said. “But I’m a person that’s willing to listen to people that do have good ideas, bring into the table have both sides, talk about them and come to an agreement.”

Aaron Sorrells said he decided to run after the mandates and closures of 2020. He said he wants to focus on priorities like property taxes, abolishing abortion and medical and religious freedoms.

“it’s time to set the example,” Sorrells said. “And it’s time to get our state back to where it belongs. Not just for Republicans, but for everybody. Because if we fix a lot of these problems, it helps the livelihoods of everybody in Texas.”

Despite reaching out several times, we were not able to interview current lieutenant governor Dan Patrick.

Early voting runs through Feb. 25, but is closed for President’s Day on Feb. 21. The primary is March 1.

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