DALLAS - Early voting begins Monday in Texas, and one of the hottest races to watch is the contest for Dallas mayor.
There are nine candidates vying for the seat being vacated by Mike Rawlings.
They include: businessmen Michael Ablon and Albert C. Black Jr., state lawmakers Jason Villalba and Eric Johnson, Dallas School Board Trustee Miguel Solis, philanthropist Lynn McBee, Dallas City Councilman Scott Griggs, socialist worker party candidate Alyson Kennedy, Regina Montoya-Coggins, a former member of the Clinton administration.
“This is maybe the most wide open Dallas mayoral election in recent memory,” SMU Political Scientist Matthew Wilson said.
Wilson said it's hard to say who could end up in a runoff.
“It does show that it's both a politically and ethnically diverse city, and we knew that,” he said. “What it also shows is that there's less predictability in Dallas politics than there's been in quite a long time.”
In Fort Worth, Mayor Betsy Price is seeking a record fifth term.
She's being challenged by three candidates: Michael Haynes, James H. McBride, and the chairwoman of the Tarrant County Democratic Party, Deborah Peoples.
No matter the outcome, Wilson expects both races to have low voter turnout.
“We're talking about a race held in the spring of an off year. So as a result, Dallas mayoral elections typically see pretty low turnout. We'll see whether any of that voter enthusiasm and voter mobilization from 2018 carries forward into this mayoral race,” Wilson added.
Early voting starts Monday morning and runs through April 30. Election day is Saturday, May 4.
Any race not determined by more than 50 percent of the vote will go to a runoff election on June 8.
Early Voting Info
Denton County - www.votedenton.com/early-voting-information/