Navy veteran Jay Furman will win the Republican primary runoff in the Texas 28th Congressional District, CNN projects, setting up a clash with embattled Democratic Rep. Henry Cuellar in November.

Cuellar and his wife have been charged with accepting nearly $600,000 in bribes from two foreign entities, according to an indictment in federal court in Texas. The alleged scheme took place from late 2014 through at least November 2021, the indictment says.

A longtime fixture in Texas politics who has been targeted by progressives over his opposition to abortion rights and other moderate stances, Cuellar has nonetheless survived a series of competitive primaries in recent years. The 28th District, which stretches from the San Antonio area to Laredo and the surrounding Rio Grande Valley counties, was a GOP target last cycle but Cuellar ended up winning a tenth term decisively.

However, the criminal charges will test the strength of the congressman’s hold on the seat. They could lead to a competitive general election or at the very least become a flashpoint nationally with Republicans using Cuellar to portray Democrats as corrupt.


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