Steven Kling to Challenge Campbell
The former Army Reserve Captain will run for Donna Campbell’s SD 25 seat
Sen. Donna Campbell, R-New Braunfels, has her first declared opponent for 2018. On Monday, Steven Kling announced that he plans to run for the SD 25 seat as a Democrat. A former Army Reserve captain and Bronze Star recipient who served in both Afghanistan and Iraq, Kling is now a principal at an IT consulting firm in Dripping Springs. He has accused the incumbent of "peddling nostalgia" by rubberstamping reactionary policies, and attacked her for inadequately preparing the district's infrastructure for its rapid development.
Campbell first broke into legislative politics with an unsuccessful run against Rep. Lloyd Doggett in 2010, then took her Senate seat after primarying out GOP veteran Jeff Wentworth in 2012, and beating Democrat John Courage 66-34%. While it has never been challenged in court, Campbell's district is one of the most egregiously gerrymandered of all the Senate seats, stretching from northern San Antonio up into South Austin. It's anchored in New Braunfels, though with shifting demographics along the I-35 corridor, and an anti-GOP backlash anticipated for 2018, her 32% margin of victory in 2012 may not prove a strong predictor of next year's results. Moreover, Kling's campaign might know a little bit about underdog success: Julie Ann Nitsch, who had an upset victory in November's election for Austin Community College board of trustees, is currently handling his press.