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Texas Primary Turnout Was Low, Runoff May Be Lower

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File photo of Lieutenant Governor of Texas David Dewhurst. (Photo by Brendan Hoffman/Getty Images)

File photo of Lieutenant Governor of Texas David Dewhurst. (Photo by Brendan Hoffman/Getty Images)

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AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Turnout was low for the Texas primary, and a July 31 runoff to decide who wins the Republican nomination for U.S. Senate is likely to see it sink even lower.

Both Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst and tea party darling Ted Cruz claim that’s good news.

But who’s right may ultimately depend on just how low turnout goes.

About 11 percent of registered Republicans cast ballots Tuesday. That meant about 1.4 million people voted in the GOP race to replace retiring U.S. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison.

Dewhurst won 43 percent of the vote, 10 points better than Cruz.

Mark Jones of Rice University expects turnout for the runoff to fall to between 750,000 and 1 million ballots cast.

The higher the better for Dewhurst, he says. Lower turnout likely benefits Cruz.

(© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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