Texas is one of only nine states where you can still vote a straight ticket, notes The Texas Tribune. That means, voters in the Lone Star State are still able to go into the voting booth and select a single party, thus voting for each of that party’s candidates straight down the ballot. Straight-ticket voting generally benefits the party in power—in Texas’s case, the Republicans. That’s one reason the Republican Texas Legislature has left the straight-ticket voting law in place.
There have been repeated attempts to change the law over the years, to no avail. Since 2010, six states have rid themselves of straight-ticket voting. That makes Texas one of the last holdouts.
But straight ticket voting can also pose a problem for the party in power if the head of the ticket is deeply unpopular. Tin that case, down-ballot contenders can suffer more than usual for the antipathy of voters toward the top candidate.