Decision 2020

TX 24 Congressional Race: Van Duyne Campaign Asks Valenzuela to Concede; Democrat Calls for All Votes to Be Counted

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There is yet to be an official winner named in the hotly contested race for the open Congressional seat in District 24 between Republican Beth Van Duyne and Democrat Candace Valenzuela.

The difference as of Wednesday afternoon was less than 5,000 votes favoring Van Duyne.

Van Duyne’s campaign asserts there is no way for Valenzuela to "catch up to their lead."

The Republican took the stage just before midnight in Hurst to declare herself winner of the race that had been considered a toss-up by national political analysts.

Van Duyne opened her speech by telling the crowd that included the Tarrant County GOP that there were still ballots being counted in Dallas County.

“We’ve done the math and at this point in time we don’t believe there’s enough out votes to make up for the margin so we’re going to go ahead and call it,” she said to the cheering crowd.

Valenzuela, a former Carrollton-Farmers Branch school board member, declined to concede the race Tuesday night saying there were still many votes left to be counted.

Her camp declined interviews on Wednesday but released a statement where Valenzuela again declined to concede the race.

Van Duyne took to Twitter on Wednesday morning to post a photograph with the caption: "breakfast of champions."

The former two-term Irving mayor and former city council member who also briefly served in the Trump administration overseeing Housing and Urban Development operations in five states, including Texas, says she is ready to serve the district of approximately 700,000 residents in portions of Dallas, Denton and Tarrant Counties.

“I commit to you tonight that not only is it important to represent everyone in this room, but everyone in this district,” Van Duyne said.

Van Duyne’s biggest support came from Tarrant County where she carried most of the county in District 24 with the exception of areas in Bedford and Euless. The conservative politician beat Valenzuela in Tarrant County by more than 30,000 votes.

Valenzuela is a political newcomer who received major funding from Democrats believing they could flip the Republican stronghold seat.

In a statement to NBC 5 Wednesday, Van Duyne’s campaign asserted there were about 14,000 absentee ballots left to be counted in Tarrant County. However, not all of Tarrant County is in District 24.

Her campaign said even if all 14,000 votes were in Tarrant County, Van Duyne would still prevail.

Van Duyne’s campaign then told her Democratic challenger in the statement:

‘It is time for Canace to concede the race and recognize North Texans have chosen Beth Van Duyne as their next Representative.’

Following Van Duyne’s statement, Valenzuela’s campaign released its own statement stating:

“This race is too close to call and thousands of votes are still being counted. Our campaign is committed to a full and complete count of all ballots so that every vote is counted and every voice is heard.’

NBC 5 has asked each county’s elections officials to clarify how many ballots pertaining to District 24 are yet to be counted.

Denton County said they have "42 mail ballots left to be counted for District 24."

Dallas County and Tarrant County officials have not yet responded.

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