AUSTIN (KXAN) — Agriculture Commissioner incumbent Sid Miller was re-elected to his seat after being challenged by Democrat Susan Hays. 

Miller thanked grassroots efforts and volunteers for helping to push his campaign forward. He said he looks forward to getting back into the office on Wednesday morning and working for the state of Texas.

“We have a pretty long legislative agenda, but we’re going to really push the legislature on the state and federal level to prevent our enemies like China from buying any more of our farmland,” Miller said Tuesday night.

Miller received 4,468,404 votes (56.36%) while Hays got 3,459,395 votes (43.64%).

“As usual, our number one priority is getting local products, locally grown products in our school cafeterias,” he continued.

Texas Agriculture Commissioner is tasked with the duties of overseeing a large budget at the Texas Department of Agriculture, which helps give financial assistance to farmers and ranchers, uses grants to attract development in rural Texas, and oversees the products that wind up in your grocery stores. 

The two candidates have significant policy differences, but one area where their ideas overlap is marijuana. Both support the use of medical cannabis. 

The topic of agriculture and water has renewed importance as Texas faces drought. Hays wanted to “promote both economically and environmentally sustainable agriculture” and “will seek to bring the available federal funding to facilitate these practices to Texas and lead the way to the future of Texas Ag.” 

Miller has acknowledged Texas’ water vulnerability and has previously stated, “While being your Texas Agriculture Commissioner gives me an important vantage point on this challenge, the Department of Agriculture lacks the authority to initiate such a program. It will require a broad public commitment and leadership from all branches of government, as well as the private sector.”