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Donald Huffines

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Donald Huffines
Don Huffines.jpg
Texas State Senate, District 16
In office
January 13, 2015 - Present
Term ends
January 7, 2019
Years in position 0
Base salary$7,200/year
Per diem$150/day
Elections and appointments
Last electionNovember 4, 2014
First electedNovember 4, 2014
Term limitsN/A
Bachelor'sUniversity of Texas, Austin (1981)
Office website
Personal website
Campaign website
Donald Huffines is a Republican member of the Texas State Senate, representing District 16. He was first elected to the chamber in 2014.


Huffines graduated from the University of Texas, Austin in 1981 with a BBA in Finance. He started working for Henry S. Miller Company, the largest commercial brokerage company in Texas, in 1982. Huffines was promoted to vice president in 1984.[1]

Huffines started the company "Huffines Communities" in 1985, which has grown to be one of the largest real-estate developers in Dallas.[2] Huffines' grandfather opened a local car business in 1924 that is still run by Huffines' brother.[3]

Committee assignments

2015 legislative session

At the beginning of the 2015 legislative session, Huffines served on the following committees:

Texas Committee Assignments, 2015
Business & Commerce
Transportation, Vice-Chair


Campaign themes


In announcing his campaign in October 2013, Huffines said he believes in "limited government, in cutting spending so we can decrease taxes. I believe in the traditional family." He added: "We’re going to raise enough money to get our message out – a career politician and one of the most liberal senators in Austin against a true conservative."[4][5] Huffines' politics are considered to have a "strong libertarian tinge."[6] Huffines listed a number of issues on his campaign website, including the following excerpts:

  • Term limits: Huffines said if elected he will not serve more than three terms.[7]
  • Taxes and Fees: Huffines said: "I believe that government should live within its means. It is my pledge to the voters not to increase taxes or fees. As government expands, the price tag falls on the taxpayers. We cannot afford this nor should we. I will work to find every tax dollar wasted on unnecessary fees and eliminate taxes that do nothing more than expand the role of government."[7]
  • Education: Huffines said: "I want to ensure that every child in Texas has the best education possible. I believe that no one knows better for his or her child than parents and families. While the Texas Constitution does provide for public education, kids are served best when parents have choices in education. I support families making the best decision regarding their children’s education and keeping the state out of the process as best as possible. As a father of five, I understand the difficult decisions that parents face. I support broadening the options available for families by making our public schools more competitive, capping the salaries of school administrators, expanding charter schools, and empowering both parents and teachers with choices."[7]



See also: Texas State Senate elections, 2014

Elections for 15 of the 31 seats in the Texas State Senate took place in 2014. A primary election took place on March 4, 2014. The general election was held on November 4, 2014. The signature-filing deadline for candidates wishing to run in these elections was December 9, 2013. Donald Huffines defeated incumbent John Carona in the Republican primary. Mike Dooling (L) filed for election but did not appear on the general election ballot. Huffines was unopposed in the general election.[8][9][10]

Prior to the March 4 primary, Huffines said Carona was too liberal and described the 18-year incumbent as out-of-touch in the district.[4] After Huffines declared for the seat, Carona said: "I’m surprised Mr. Huffines was running as a Republican considering that he spent a small fortune attacking Republicans in the 2012 presidential campaign, but I welcome a thorough debate on the issues facing Texans."[11] In 2012, Huffines helped form a SuperPAC that supported Ron Paul and spent more than $400,000 in the race.[4] Texas Monthly named Carona one of the worst legislators in 2013, pointing in part to his long absence during the session.[12]



Huffines was endorsed by the following groups and individuals for the 2014 Texas State Senate election.

  • Dick Armey, former U.S. House Majority Leader[13]
  • Rand Paul, U.S. Senator from Kentucky[13]
  • Empower Texans[14]
  • Michael Quinn Sullivan, Texans for Fiscal Responsibility[13]
  • Tim Lambert, Texas Home School Coalition[13]
  • Cathie Adams, President, Texas Eagle Forum[13]
  • Denise McNamara, Former National Republican Committeewoman[13]
  • JoAnn Fleming, Executive Director, Grassroots America[13]
  • Kelly Shackelford, President and CEO, Liberty Institute[13]
  • Texas Right to Life[13]
  • David Barton, President of WallBuilders and former Vice-Chairman of the Republican Party of Texas[13]
  • Texas Conservative Digest[13]


See also: State legislative scorecards and State legislative scorecards in Texas

Legislative scorecards are used to evaluate elected public officials based on voting record. Some scorecards are created by political advocacy groups with a focus on specific issues, while others are developed by newspapers and are broad in scope. Scorecards are meant to be used as a tool for voters to have a quick picture of whether their views align with a particular legislator's record.

Because scorecards can be specific to particular issues or general to a state’s legislative term, for example, each report should be considered on its own merits. Each entity that publishes these reports uses different methodologies and definitions for the terms used.

An overview for scorecards in all 50 states can be found on this page. To contribute to the list of Texas scorecards, email suggestions to

Please see our writing guidelines if you would like to add results from an individual scorecard to this legislator's profile.


Huffines and his wife, Mary Catherine, have four sons and one daughter.[2]

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Political offices
Preceded by
John Carona (R)
Texas State Senate District 10
Succeeded by