It’s unclear if anyone other than Ms Wright and Ms Sanchez can make it to the second round, but the most likely candidate appears to be State Representative Jake Ellzey of Midlothian, a Republican.
Mr Ellzey, a former Navy fighter pilot and commercial airline pilot who ran against Mr Wright in the 2018 Republican primary, also wields his own high-level endorsement. He was backed by Rick Perry, Texas’ longest-serving governor and energy secretary during part of the Trump administration.
Although Mr. Perry’s support for Mr. Ellzey puts him at political disagreement with his former boss in Washington, the former governor is a longtime friend of the Congressional candidate.
Another Republican candidate, Brian Harrison, is a former chief of staff in the Department of Health and Human Services who touts his service in the Trump administration. A photo from the website shows him standing next to Mr. Trump in the Oval Office.
While the Republican candidates offer different styles and backgrounds, they seem to fundamentally agree to call for strong border enforcement, low taxes, gun rights, and other GOP priorities. “There are differences in life experiences, but not in problems,” said Craig Murphy, spokesperson for Mr. Ellzey’s campaign.
An outlier is Michael Wood, a business owner who has gained attention as an anti-Trump Republican. He said the former president bore much of the blame for the Capitol Riot and that many mainstream Republicans were looking for an alternative to Trumpism.
The challenge for other Democrats in the race is to overthrow Ms Sanchez’s status as Democratic leader and clinch a spot in the second round. Among the main contenders are Lydia Bean, a teacher and business owner, and Shawn Lassiter, an educator.
“It’s anyone’s race at this point,” Ms. Rayes said.
Dave montgomery reported from Austin, and Edgar Sandoval of San Antonio. Sheelagh McNeill contributed to the research.