U.S. Rep. Vicente Gonzalez Jr. (D) defeated U.S. Rep. Mayra Flores (R) in the general election for Texas’ 34th Congressional District on Nov. 8, 2022. This election was one of two U.S. House races in which two incumbents faced off in the general election.
Texas’ congressional district boundaries were redrawn after the 2020 census. According to data from Daily Kos, voters in the redrawn 34th District backed Joe Biden (D) over Donald Trump (R) 57.3% to 41.8% in the 2020 presidential election.
Gonzalez was first elected to represent Texas’ 15th Congressional District in 2016. Gonzalez’s campaign website said, “Vicente has stood by our promise to veterans, helping constituents cut through red tape at the VA and working across the aisle to prevent the shameful deportation of our honorably discharged veterans. He’s working to lower prescription drug prices, protect the benefits and healthcare of seniors, and ensure that jobs and opportunities are there for all with the ganas to work. … As a Congressman, he is delivering billions to support our schools, families, and small businesses and continues helping South Texans recover the federal benefits they are owed.”
Flores was elected to represent the old 34th district in a June 2022 special election to fill the seat vacated by Rep. Filemon Vela (D). Flores’ campaign website stated, “As the first Mexican-born woman to serve in Congress, I am fighting for opportunity and security for all those living in our amazing district. Our America First policies resonate with the Hispanic community and others who live in this district. For over 100 years, the Democrat Party has taken for granted the loyalty and support South Texas has given them for decades. But they do nothing to earn our vote or our support. And meanwhile, President Biden is killing Texas jobs, weakening border security, and weakening our standing in the world. Enough is enough.”
The Texas Tribune‘s Matthew Choi described the race as “a high-drama, multi-month affair of desperate pleas, dashed hopes and political gamesmanship that highlighted the stakes of when national forces come into play in a hyperlocal race.”
According to Insider‘s Hanna Kang and Dorothy Cucci, “As of early November, several dozen super PACs, national party committees, politically active nonprofits, and other non-candidate groups … together spent about $10.9 million to advocate for or against candidates in this race, including during the race’s primary phase. The Congressional Leadership Fund, a national Republican hybrid PAC that backs Flores, alone [accounted] for nearly half that spending.”
All 435 House districts were up for election on Nov. 8.