Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee Loses Houston Mayoral Race, Now Faced With Decision on Her Political Future

The clock is ticking on the deadline to file for reelection to Congress.

Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee is expected to announce her next political move on Monday (Dec. 11) after losing her bid for Houston mayor.

State Sen. John Whitmire defeated the veteran congresswoman 65 percent to 35 percent in a runoff election on Saturday (Dec. 9), according to Harris County unofficial results. If she had won the election, Jackson Lee would have become the first Black woman to serve as Houston's mayor.

Local station KPRC reports that Jackson Lee, 73, faces a 6 p.m. Monday (Dec. 11) deadline to file for reelection in 2024 to the U.S. House of Representatives, where she has served since 1995.

After conceding defeat Saturday night, KPRC asked Jackson Lee if she plans to run in the upcoming election.

“We’ll have that announcement in the next two days,” Jackson Lee responded. “But I have continued to serve all my life. I have much more to give, and I’m very glad that there are constituents and people who want me to give some more.

According to Ballotpedia, Jackson Lee would face four competitors in the Democratic primary election: Jasmine Blue, Amanda Edwards, Isaiah Martin and Robert Slater

Edwards, an attorney and former at-large member of the Houston City Council, raised more than $1 million and had $829,000 in her campaign account on Sept. 30, while Jackson Lee had $213,000, Roll Call.

Jackson Lee won reelection in 2022 with more than 70 percent of the vote.

RELATED: Sheila Jackson Lee Trails John Whitmire In Houston Mayoral Race As Early Voting Begins

In the first round of mayoral voting on Nov. 7, Jackson Lee finished second behind Whitmire in a field of 17 candidates. She won 36 percent of the vote to Whitmire’s 43 percent. No candidate passed the 50 percent threshold, triggering the runoff election race.

A poll taken in mid-November showed Jackson Lee trailing Whitmire, a fellow Democrat, by 7 percent (42 percent to 35 percent), with 22 percent of voters undecided, Houston Public Radio reported.

Whitmire has had a huge fundraising advantage, $500,000 for Jackson Lee compared to Whitmire’s nearly $1.8 million by November. She also had to manage the fallout from an unverified audio recording in October that purported to capture Jackson Lee giving an expletive-laced tongue-lashing to a staffer for his incompetence.

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