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Texas Primary Early Voting Begins Wednesday

Updated: Monday, February 17 2014, 12:24 PM CST

Democracy's big wheel starts another turn tomorrow when early voting kicks off in the Texas primaries.

Voters will have a chance to select their party's nominees in the races for governor on down to county commissioner. With the expected Republican domination of Texas politics expected to continue through the election cycle, the outcome of several primary contests will all but decide the results of November's general election.

But experts also believe March 4 will formally launch one of the more competitive races for governor the state has seen in years.

To get there though, Attorney General Greg Abbott has to overcome several determined underdogs in his quest to replace outgoing Gov. Rick Perry. Three conservatives insurgent conservatives – Lisa Fritsch, Miriam Martinez, and SECEDE Kilgore – are looking to pull off the historic upset.

Meanwhile, Democratic State Sen. Wendy Davis is facing token opposition from perennial candidate Ray Madrigal for her party's nod for governor.

Meantime, all eyes are on an undercard fight – the Republican four-man battle royal for lieutenant governor. Incumbent David Dewhurst is fighting for one last term against State Sen. Dan Patrick, Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson, and Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples. It's highly likely neither candidate will win a clear majority in March, pushing the top two vote getters into an April runoff. The victor in this race will emerge to take on State Sen. Leticia Van De Putte who is running unopposed in the Democratic primary.

The openings at the top of the executive branch have created other hotly contested primaries, some featuring familiar names. Political family scion George P. Bush is running against East Texas businessman David Watts in the Republican land commissioner contest. Democrats will find musician and writer Kinky Friedman beneath ranchers Hugh Fitzsimons III and Jim Hogan on the ballot for agriculture commissioner.

For a complete list of Republican candidates, click here.

For a complete list of Democratic candidates, click here.

For a list of early voting locations, click here.

Texas Primary Early Voting Begins Wednesday

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