U.S. Senator Texas

March 12, 2012 by staff 

U.S. Senator Texas, U.S. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison’s announcement Thursday that she won’t run again for the seat that she has held since 1993 was not entirely unexpected, but it still has the potential to overturn the state’s political apple cart. Already, several prominent pols in both parties have announced their intention to run, and several more are considering it.

State lawmakers who are up again in 2012 have a decision to make: They can’t run for reelection and run for Hutchison’s seat at the same time. By contrast, most current statewide officeholders aren’t on the ballot again until 2014, so a run for the U.S. Senate this time would be a free shot. The GOP is favored to retain Hutchison’s seat – no Democrat since John Sharp ran unsuccessfully for lieutenant governor in 2002 has won more than 46 percent in a statewide race – so the Republican primary is likely to be the real battle.

To separate the would-bes from the could-bes, we’ve created a guide to certain, likely and plausible candidates – as well a few who are plausible only to us here at the Trib.

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