How 2022 midterm election results will affect Harris Co. Commissioner’s Court

The re-election of Judge Lina Hidalgo and the defeat of Precinct 4 Commissioner Jack Cagle have delivered to Democrats unimpeded control of Harris County Government. 

RELATED: Lina Hidalgo retains seat as Harris County Judge, defeating Mealer

"Meaning that Harris County Democrats are going to be able to do whatever they want," said Rice political analyst Mark Jones

With Democrats soon to occupy four of the five seats on Commissioners court, no longer will Republicans have the ability to block budget increases or tax hikes by denying the necessary quorum - leverage which recently kept the County from collecting a quarter billion additional dollars from residents.

"They have full authority to do what they want now and there is no firewall blocking them," said Charles Blain, Fox 26 Contributor and founder of Urban Reform.

That means Democrats can fund a wish list of progressive initiatives.

"And to pay for that, increasing the property taxes that Harris County property owners pay," predicted Jones.


Meantime, Harris County Republicans may well have narrowly lost their last and best shot to regain significant control of the local government.

"This is the year where Harris County decidedly went blue," said Jones. "It's going to become tougher for Republicans to recruit quality candidates to run for Countywide office moving forward after people look at the case of Alex Mealer who was running against a damaged candidate who had great resources, who was operating in a context nationally that was favorable for Republicans and still could not defeat Lina Hidalgo."

Blain is less pessimistic about Republican prospects.

"I think the fact that they did win a couple of judge races breathed some new life into the party and shows, it's not dead yet," said Blain.

While Tuesday's win was narrow, Jones says Hidalgo's victory has boosted her credibility as a potential candidate for statewide office.