PSG Congratulates Client Pete Flores on ‘Historic’ & ‘Shocking’ Victory

Matt Mackowiak / Jamie Bennett
(512) 469-9090

September 21, 2018

PSG Congratulates Client Pete Flores on ‘Historic’ & ‘Shocking’ Victory

Mackowiak Served as General Consultant in Win in Hillary +12 District

AUSTIN, TX — Potomac Strategy Group wants to congratulate Republican Sen.-elect Pete Flores on his historic victory in the Senate District 19 special election runoff on September 18. His victory has sent shockwaves around the country after Flores won in a district Hillary carried by 12 percent in 2016. PSG president Matt Mackowiak served as general consultant and strategist for the Flores campaign. 

Flores defeated former State Rep. and former U.S. Rep. Pete Gallego by a margin of six percent (53 percent to 47 percent) with about 45,000 votes cast. He is the first Hispanic Republican in the history of the Texas Senate and the first Republican to represent Senate District 19, which serves South and West Texas, since 1879.

“Pete Flores was an outstanding candidate who was a perfect fit for this district,” said Matt Mackowiak, PSG president. “We were honored to serve as General Consultant on this historic campaign. Ending more than 100 years of Democratic representation and defeating a Democratic opponent with 22 years of serving this area was not easy. But nothing worth doing is ever easy. Our campaign team and army of grassroots supporters worked tirelessly for six straight months to bring home this victory. Now the real work begins.”

PSG wants to specifically thank David Carney and John Jackson from the Abbott campaign, Sherry Sylvester and Allen Blakemore from the Patrick campaign, Chairman James Dickey and the Republican Party of Texas, Texans for Lawsuit Reform, Empower Texans and Associated Republicans of Texas for their extraordinary support. This victory was a team effort in the very best sense. 

“Matt Mackowiak did a great job leading our campaign strategy and execution,” said Sen.-elect Flores. “He believed this was possible from the beginning. Matt’s expertise, guidance, and leadership were instrumental in the success of this campaign. I value his friendship and his commitment to the campaign.”

PSG provided a wide range of services to the campaign, including strategy development and execution, fundraising, communications strategy and media relations, media production and placement (in the first round), digital ad strategy and placement, website design, graphic design, newspaper ad design, field strategy and execution and political advising related to endorsements and managing relationships with elected officials, campaigns, trade associations and endorsement recruitment.

PSG vice president Jamie Bennett provided crucial assistance in all phases of the campaign, but especially in communications, graphic development, scheduling, political outreach, writing, and website development. 

PSG has consistently taken on difficult races, serving as Campaign Manager for Congressman Bill Flores (R-TX) in his victory over 10-term incumbent Congressman Chet Edwards (D-TX) in 2010, helping elect Congressman John Ratcliffe (R-TX) in a historic primary victory over Congressman Ralph Hall (R-TX) in 2014 and leading the campaign effort of State Rep. Hugh Shine (R-Temple) over incumbent State Rep. Molly White (R-Belton) in a primary in 2016.

“Anyone can win a race when you are favored,” said Mackowiak. “We seek out the hard races and enjoy creating tailored strategies and plans, not cookie-cutter campaigns. We find the challenge rewarding and value the opportunity that each difficult race provides.”

Mackowiak structured most of his compensation from the Pete Flores campaign in the form of a win bonus, which was contingent upon the campaign being successful. He did this because of his high degree of confidence in the campaign’s ultimate success, a rarity in political consulting, especially in races that appear to be uphill battles.


In the first round on July 31, Pete Flores finished first out of eight candidates with 34 percent of the vote, earning about 9,000 of 24,000 votes cast. He finished ahead of former Congressman Pete Gallego (D-TX), State Rep. Roland Gutierrez (D-San Antonio) and State Rep. Tomas Uresti (D-San Antonio). Flores was outspent 12-1 by the top two Democrats and earned 9,000 votes with just $50,000, using precious resources for a district-wide Fox News cable buy and targeted radio ads. Late but crucial endorsements came from Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX), Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick (R-TX), Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) and Gov. Greg Abbott (R-TX), in addition to early support from Texas Right to Life and the National Rifle Association. 

In round two, the race was a different one as it became a head-to-head contest against Pete Gallego, a candidate with 100 percent name identification due to 22 years of serving in state and federal elected office.

Partnering with the Abbott and Patrick campaigns, the Flores campaign and their supporters proceeded to make more than 100,000 phone calls, knock on more than 30,000 doors, raise more than $350,000, and visit all 17 counties in just six weeks.

 In the end, the Flores campaign was the only campaign on television, had a significant advantage on radio (financial and geographic), was at least equal on mail, and had a collective 10-1 advantage on digital ad spending. 

“Flipping a State Senate seat is extremely difficult,” said Mackowiak. “There are only 31 of them in Texas and they rarely change parties. But we believed we could do this from the beginning. Belief is a powerful thing.”

PSG was founded in 2009 and provides political campaign consulting to Republican candidates and corporate communications consulting service to companies, trade associations and individuals, with specific focus on energy, heath care, telecommunications and tech. Over his career, Matt Mackowiak has helped elect three members of the Texas Congressional Delegation, a Texas Supreme Court Justice and a State Representative.

To learn more about PSG, visit our website,


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