BELTON — U.S. Rep. John Carter, R-Round Rock, will for sure be on the Nov. 3 ballot.
But the question of whom his Democratic opponent will be is unknown until May 26 as Cedar Park Physician Christine Eady Mann and computer engineer Donna Imam are headed for a runoff.
Mann had 41.6 percent of the vote while Imam had 30.2 percent, according to unofficial voting results from around 11 p.m.
Round Rock Councilwoman Tammy Young was in third with 10.6 percent of the vote, followed by retirement advisor Eric Hanke with 5.4 percent and former actor Dan Janjigian with 3.0 percent
Carter easily staved off three challengers Tuesday night. The nine-term congressman secured 83.8 percent of the vote, according to voting returns.
Retired firefighter Mike Williams earned 7.7 percent, Elgin Police officer Chris Wall got 4.5 percent and Abhiram Garapati garnered 4.1 percent, according to unofficial voting results from Bell and Williamson counties.
National Democrats are hoping to flip Texas’ 31st Congressional District after Air Force veteran MJ Hegar’s 3-point loss to Carter in 2018. The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee announced in August it planned to target the district.
Regardless of whom the Democrats pick, health care will be a divisive issue between Carter and his opponent.
Carter said the country’s health care problems will not be solved by ending private insurance and putting Americans on what he describes as a one-size-fits-all socialized plan.
“I believe our health care system should protect pre-existing conditions, promote patient choice and expand access to care,” Carter said.
Mann supports a public option.
“Folks want change, positive, affordable, quality coverage with no worry on how to afford it or losing their job and thus their coverage, too,” Mann said. “My plan for universal coverage from birth to death would give people the freedom to use the doctors and facilities best for their families, security of coverage for their whole lives regardless of pre-existing conditions and peace of mind knowing their access cannot be denied.”
Imam supports Medicare for All.
“In addition, my Healthcare for All proposal accelerates Medicare for All with more doctors and nurses to cover everyone, especially in underserved and rural areas,” Imam said.
Whoever the Democratic nominee is will enter the general election with a significant monetary disadvantage.
Carter has raised more than $1.1 million, according to campaign finance reports ending Feb. 12. He has $671,878 in cash on hand.
Mann has raised $198,783 and has $18,109 in cash on hand.
Imam has brought in $227,631 and has $158,333 in cash on hand. Although she has more money, the Texas Tribune reported she gave herself a $100,000 loan.