San Marcos Mercury | Local News from San Marcos and Hays County, Texas
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Senior Correspondent

Hays County Precinct 1 Commissioner Debbie Ingalsbe already is nearing the end of her third term and she could be well on her way to a fourth after her convincing Democratic primary win Tuesday night over challenger Celestino Mendez.

Despite challenge from well-connected political players in Kyle and San Marcos, Ingalsbe’s supporters delivered a crushing victory. Ingalsbe took 2,169 votes, 65 percent of 3,337 votes cast. With her victory, Ingalsbe will move on to the November general election to face a challenge from Republican Nick Ramus.

Ingalsbe’s district is comprised of the eastern portions of San Marcos and southern reaches of Kyle.

With her win, Ingalsbe goes to the general election as a prohibitive favorite due to her proven electoral success in her precinct and the prospects for a big Democratic year in a presidential vote.

Ingalsbe and Mendez campaigned on very similar arguments, which played to the incumbent’s advantage against her 75-year-old challenger. While Mendez supporters argued that Ingalsbe didn’t show sufficient interest in road improvements, Ingalsbe campaigned on the county’s progress in moving forward on the San Marcos loop and Interstate-35 through Kyle. Both candidates discussed giving the office greater presence in Kyle.

The incumbent remains a key player on the commissioners court as the swing vote. Often, Ingalsbe will break the tie when Precinct 2 Commissioner Jeff Barton (D-Kyle) and Precinct 3 Commissioner Will Conley (R-San Marcos) are on one side of an issue, while County Judge Liz Sumter (D-Wimberley) and Precinct 4 Commissioner Karen Ford (D-Dripping Springs) are on the other.

In effect, Ingalsbe’s vote decided that the county will issue $19.5 million in revenue bonds to begin work on road projects included in a pass-through financing agreement with the state. Ingalsbe at first argued against a revenue bond issue, but negotiated an agreement with Barton in open court to approve the measure.

Senior correspondent BILL PETERSON is editor of where this story was originally published. It is reprinted here through a news partnership with

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3 thoughts on “Ingalsbe wins easily over challenger

  1. Commissioner Ingalsbe
    Continue using your own judgement, put your blinders on so all you see is what you are thinking. You don’t need to follow the others on the court. Way to go on your recent decisions!!

  2. If the blinders you are referring to are named Charles O’Dell then I encourage Debbie to cease immediately or resign her position. I used to be a Debbie supporter, but after no response at the League of Women Voters meeting after a flyer saying that she supposedly asked for Dr. Charles O’Dell to give her a position to vote on the council makes me want to support that poor Mr. Ramus, who is losing his restaurant.

  3. It’s too bad that the community didn’t get to hear the truth about Commissioner Ingalsbe, such as taking policy directions from the HAYSCAN-man Charles O’Dell.
    She allowed herself to be manipulated in the worst scheme of big government I’ve seen in this county. I’m not surprised that some other Hispanic businesses haven’t started business here. I wouldn’t either if I knew that I could easily be discriminated against because a friend of a Commissioner didn’t like me.
    Not only that, but the Commissioner championed herself as a supporter of new roads, when she was one of the votes against the roads in the first place. Because of that, we are still taking naps on 1626, while waiting to move 10 feet every 2 minutes.
    I supported Mendez and I wish the truth could have been known before but such is life. The last time I ever voted for a republican was back in 1996, but I think I may be voting Republican this year at least for this spot.

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