Oil money fuels north Texas state senate race


Lots of money is pouring into the North Texas Senate campaign of Shelley Luther and it’s coming from West Texas oil and fracking billionaires.

The Dallas Morning News reported that newly-released finance reports show Midland oilman Tim Dunn loaned $1 million to the salon owner’s campaign, while Cisco fracking billionaire Farris Wilks and his wife, Jo Ann, chipped in $100,000.

Luther also received $5,000 from former state Sen. Don Huffines of Dallas, a vocal critic of Gov. Greg Abbott’s handling of the coronavirus.

Luther, who made national headlines for defying COVID-19 shutdown orders, now has over a half-million dollars heading into the final stretch of the race, the most of any competitor, according to reports that detail the candidates’ fundraising for the first time before the Sept. 29 election.

Luther, a Republican, is one of six candidates vying for the Senate District 30 seat, including state Rep. Drew Springer. The four-term legislator from Muenster — who has racked up dozens of endorsements from fellow GOP lawmakers — raised roughly $560,000.

Springer’s biggest check of $100,000 came from Midland oilman Javaid Anwar — one of Abbott’s top campaign contributors. Other large sums came from Texans for Lawsuit Reform PAC, which gave $30,000, and the Texas Farm Bureau AGFUND, which contributed $25,000, campaign finance reports show.

Source: Dallas Morning News