AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - It would seem that Texas Republicans have never been stronger. A Republican successor is emerging to follow the departing Gov. Rick Perry. And a GOP-heavy legislature passed a bill last week to dramatically restrict abortions, a top party priority.
Behind the scenes, however, political strategists are poring over data suggesting the GOP dominance may end. With the state's Hispanic population growing rapidly and voting overwhelmingly Democratic, Democrats should be able to compete for statewide office again in the next decade, pollsters project. Much will depend on how many Hispanic residents Democrats get to the polls. A new Democratic organization is working to increase Hispanic turnout from about 24 percent to more than 30. But Republican leaders say they are now targeting Hispanic voters, too, and expect significant gains.
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