In one of the few closely contested local races for the Texas House of Representatives, incumbent Republican Sarah Davis turned back a challenge by Democrat Ann Johnson on Tuesday and secured a second term representing District 134.
The race featured two attorneys, both cancer survivors, vying for a high-profile seat that cuts across southwest Houston and Bellaire. The largely upscale district, which encompasses the Texas Medical Center and Rice University, became more favorable to Republicans last year after the Legislature tweaked its boundaries. But many believed the seat was in play in part because voters there showed weak support for Gov. Rick Perry in 2010.
It didn't turn out that way. Davis, 36, credited the district's conservative values, especially with respect to fiscal policy.
"And that's the platform I ran on," said Davis, who ousted Democratic incumbent Ellen Cohen in the tea party-driven Republican sweep of 2010.
It was her first run for any office.
The openly lesbian Johnson, 38, said her campaign had a positive effect even in defeat.