Updated 11 a.m., May 23
Attorney Lizzie Pannill Fletcher has defeated activist and writer Laura Moser in the Democratic primary race for the 7th Congressional District in Texas, according to unofficial results. With all percents reporting, Fletcher earned 67.1 percent of the vote, or 11,423 votes in total, compared to Moser’s 5,605 votes.
“Thank you, #TX07,” Fletcher said in a statement published to her campaign’s Facebook page. “I am honored and proud to be your nominee to represent our district, and to get us the representation we deserve in Washington.”
Fletcher will move on to face Republican incumbent John Culberson in the midterm elections in November. District 7 includes parts of western Harris County, including parts of Jersey Village, Cy-Fair, the I-10 corridor and Bellaire.
Fletcher, who is also the co-founder of Planned Parenthood Young Leaders, said her top priorities if elected would include fighting for more federal help to fund long-awaited flood projects, strengthening and improving the Affordable Care Act and improving transportation in the Houston area.
She has also called for gun safety measures—including a ban on military-style assault weapons and requiring universal background checks on all gun sales—and for comprehensive immigration reform that includes both punishing employers who break the law and strengthening border security, but also protecting Dreamers and providing a pathway to citizenship.
A total of 34,211 Democrats turned out to vote in the March 6 primary elections in District 7, compared to 39,719 Republicans. Voter turnout for Democrats increased dramatically from the last midterm election in 2014, where 7,358 Democrats voted in the District 7 primary.
A total of 37,759 Republicans voted in District 7 in the 2014 primary election, during which Culberson ran unopposed.
Because of the increase in Democratic turnout, Fletcher said she believes she can turn the district blue in November. She expressed gratitude to Moser and the other Democratic candidates who ran against her in the primary for inspiring voters to turn out.
“The energy and optimism we saw in this primary is a preview of what we can do November,” she said.
Culberson’s campaign released a statement on election night reiterating his priorities.
“Houston deserves a representative who can continue to deliver results on the things that matter to the people of Congressional District 7 like improving our flood control network, expanding the Katy Freeway, protecting our critical oil and gas jobs, and restoring NASA to the glory days of Apollo,” he said. “Too much is at stake for Houston to experiment with the far-left ideas of my opponent.”
Culberson was first elected to the seat in 2000. Republicans have held District 7 dating back to 1967, when George H. W. Bush took the seat. Culberson was most recently re-elected in 2016 after defeating Democratic challenger James Cargas with 56.19 percent of the vote.
Fletcher and Moser were among seven Democratic candidates to run in the March 6 primary, coming away with 29.3 percent and 24.3 percent of the vote, respectively. Cargas ran unopposed in the March primary in 2016 as the only Democratic candidate to challenge Culberson.