Houston has elected Democratic lawmaker Sylvester Turner as its new mayor.
With his term winding down, President Obama still has the golden touch: the lawmaker he endorsed for mayor of Houston just beat off a tough challenge from a Republican challenger.
Houston hasn’t had a Republican mayor in three decades, but Republican businessman Bill King presented a stiff challenge in the battle to govern the fourth largest city in the nation, according to an Associated Press report.
The city elected 61-year-old Sylvester Turner, a veteran Democratic lawmaker endorsed by Obama, beating King by more than 4,000 votes in a runoff election on Saturday.
It’s actually the second time Turner has taken a run at the mayor’s office. He ran in the 1990s, but lost his bid, returning to the legislature where he had a lot of influence.
Turner takes over for Mayor Annise Parker, the first lesbian mayor of the city, who had reached the term limit of six years in office. She had a rough go of it toward the end of her term, with disenfranchised voters rejected her anti-discrimination ordinance.
Turner was born and raised in Houston. He has served in the Texas House of Representatives since 1989 and attended both the University of Houston and Harvard Law School.
On his website, challenger Bill King describes himself as a lifelong resident of Houston who grew up as the son of a union pipefitter and attended the University of Houston.
He also worked as a columnist for the Houston Chronicle and championed a balanced budget and investment in infrastructure.