In an attempt to engage both campaigns, Texas 22nd congressional district Democratic candidate and former diplomat Sri Preston Kulkarni challenged his Republican opponent and Sheriff Troy Nehls to four debates and public forums — but there has been no response from the Nehls camp.
With less than two months left until Election Day, Nehls has oddly been absent from the public limelight — to the extent that Sri for Congress launched a “No Show Nehls Clock” which monitors how many days it has been since Nehls’ last public appearance: today marks 59 days.
Sri 2020 campaign manager Allen Chen addressed the lack of outreach on behalf of the Nehls campaign in a statement.
“We’re facing a health care and economic crisis and the stakes in this election have never been higher,” Chen stated. “Voters deserve to know where candidates stand on the issues, but Texans have no idea what Troy Nehls believes… After he downplayed the pandemic and let coronavirus infect his own employees, Troy Nehls is hiding because he knows he has no answers for Texans who want to send their kids back to school safely and for small businesses who want to get back to work with the virus under control.
The latest poll shows Kulkarni and Nehls in a virtual tie at 39 percent, with 22 percent of voters undecided. This is positive news for the Kulkarni campaign that was down by 12 points in another poll two weeks prior. Kulkarni was also among former President Barack Obama’s first wave of 2020 Texas endorsements last month.
As the Signal reported earlier this summer, Nehls’ tenure as sheriff has continuously been scrutinized, including his opposition to mask orders and his history of police misconduct.
Both Kulkarni and Nehls are looking to replace retiring Republican Rep. Pete Olson, who has occupied the seat since 2009. RealClearPolitics currently ranks the district as a toss-up race.
The general election will be held on November 3.
Photo: Vivisel/Wikimedia Commons
Sarah brings more than seven years of experience as a multimedia journalist to Texas Signal, where she serves as our Podcast and Video Producer, managing the company's three podcasts, including SignalCast, TexMix Podcast and Three Righteous Mamas, and assisting with copy-editing and social media as well. Sarah is also the Editor-at-Large at Brown Girl Magazine, and an avid artist, TV/film enthusiast and cook. Sarah graduated from The University of Texas at Austin, majoring in Journalism, and received a Master's degree in Mass Communication from the University of Houston.