San Antonio attorney Marc LaHood, who ran unsuccessfully for Bexar County District Attorney in 2022, will challenge state Rep. Steve Allison, who represents Texas’ 121st House District, in the Republican primary in March.

“I ran for district attorney because I believed that the safety and prosperity of my family and our community was threatened by the dangerous policies and decisions being made by Democrat Joe Gonzales,” LaHood said in a statement Monday.

“I am stepping up now because I believe our state and nation are at a crisis point, and it is time for bold, unapologetic conservative leadership in the Texas House of Representatives,” he said.

LaHood’s tough-on-crime campaign for district attorney raised significant money and attention in 2022, but he lost to Gonzales 44% to 56%.

Texas’ 121st House District was represented by former Texas House Speaker Joe Straus, who surprised local Republicans when he decided not to seek reelection in 2018.

Allison, a business attorney and former Alamo Heights ISD president, emerged from a crowded Republican primary to succeed Straus and has held the seat easily since then, despite Democrats’ best efforts to put it in play.

The district includes Alamo Heights, Olmos Park, Terrell Hills and portions of Hollywood Park. Under new maps drawn after the 2020 census it would have supported President Donald Trump by 2.3% in 2020, but includes many of the wealthy, suburban voters that GOP strategists say have been moving into the Democratic Party in recent years. 

Still, Allison was reelected with more than 55% of the vote in 2022. He enjoyed more than $500,000 in campaign help from Texas House Speaker Dade Phelan, Associated Republicans of Texas and other GOP-aligned groups.

Allison occasionally splits from his party on issues related to public education, including opposing school vouchers. On other social issues, he’s been largely in line with the party’s conservative wing.

In his statement Monday, LaHood highlighted “the need for greater parental choice and freedom in education,” as well as border security.

“Our current state representative has repeatedly demonstrated that he is out of touch with our community, our priorities, and our values,” LaHood said of Allison.

Andrea Drusch writes about local government for the San Antonio Report. She's covered politics in Washington, D.C., and Texas for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, National Journal and Politico.