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Texas Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison Not Running in 2012

Texas Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison Not Running in 2012

Texas Senator and Republican Kay Bailey Hutchison has announced that she will not seek reelection in 2012, creating a very early exit at the start of what will be a long and arduous campaign cycle.

Via The Fix:

Texas Republican Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison announced today she will not seek a fourth term, the first incumbent up for reelection in 2012 to retire.

“I am announcing today that I will not be a candidate for re-election in 2012,” Hutchison said in a statement released this afternoon. “That should give the people of Texas ample time to consider who my successor will be.”

Texas Sen. John Cornyn (R), Hutchison’s home state colleague and the chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, praised Hutchison as “an example to us all”.

Bailey Hutchison had a rough ride in an attempt to run for governor this election cycle, being painted as a political insider by both Rick Perry and Tea Party favorite Debra Medina during the Republican endorsement.  Her allegedly “pro-choice” stance on abortion (by claiming that Roe V. Wade was established law) lost her much support in a year where the GOP wanted their candidates as far right as possible.

The race to replace Bailey Hutchison, who was the first female senator for the state, is expected to be overflowing with candidates.  Politico reports:

Former Texas Secretary of State Roger Williams and Railroad Commissioners Michael Williams and Elizabeth Ames Jones have already filed paperwork to pursue the seat. But Hutchison’s departure from the field will likely pique the interest of additional contenders.

Many insiders peg Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst as the “800-pound gorilla” who could burst out of the gate as the self-funding front-runner if he so chooses.

But one GOP operative, who requested anonymity, likened a hypothetical Dewhurst-Michael Williams primary to a replay of former Florida Gov. Charlie Crist’s battle with now-Sen. Marco Rubio.

Williams, who has earned the backing of South Carolina Sen. Jim DeMint and Newt Gingrich, is seen as a rising conservative star, while Dewhurst is viewed by some as careful, moderate and entrenched in the political establishment.

In a statement, Dewhurst said Thursday was a day to honor Hutchison’s service and suggested he would explore a bid in the coming weeks, but GOP lobbyist Bill Miller said the lieutenant governor “is surely a candidate.” In a megastate such as Texas, the ability to fundraise is critical to boosting name identification in all 254 counties. And Dewhurst would be able to tap the millions he made in the oil and power-plant business before entering politics.

Other potential candidates include Dallas Mayor Tom Leppert, a Hutchison ally who recently signaled he won’t pursue another term, state Attorney General Greg Abbott and Ted Cruz, a former state solicitor general and Cornyn aide who is picking up buzz in conservative circles.

Of course, for those of us who would like to see more women in office, it would be good to see more than one female candidate named in the mix of 2012 potentials, especially another moderate Republican, as the seat is likely to remain in Republican hands.  But despite an early primary, there is still plenty of time for new options to come out of the woodwork.

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55 comments

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8:36AM PST on Feb 23, 2011

Thank god. As my senator, she has never backed anything that helps women, and it has amazed me. I thought on some issues, even though a repub, her gender would enlighten her. But never!

Can you imagine what it's like for a liberal living in Texas, to have hutchison and cornyn as the TWO senators I have to try to persuade? I still contact them, so my opinion will go in the correct column, but NO HELP FROM EITHER OF THEM on any issue that impacts PEOPLE. good riddance, no matter who else is elected.

I'll work hard for whatever Dem runs.

12:10PM PST on Feb 12, 2011

Good Riddance & Bub-bye .. I hated getting her cookie cutter responses to my emails / requests.

3:12PM PST on Jan 17, 2011

To Patricia S. ... KB Hutchison is NOT a democrat ... she is REPUBLICAN THROUGH AND THROUGH AND HAS HAD AND ALWAYS HAD THE SAME AGENDA AS ALL REPIGLICANS ... SCREW THE AMERICAN PEOPLE IN EXCHANGE FOR OIL MONEY IN THEIR POCKETS ... ESP. in TEXAS!!!!!!!!!!

7:51AM PST on Jan 17, 2011

Dean,
Can't wait for the crooked dems to disappear.

10:11PM PST on Jan 16, 2011

good riddins to crooked politics one at a time!

2:48PM PST on Jan 16, 2011

She was also a con artist like Rick Perry and all the other republicans in Texas. Go to KBH.com and get the real story of how KBH took millions of dollars illegally from oil companies and other special interest through the years to solidfy her power and corrupt the the government of Texas. They should do an investigation of her and throw her in prison along Tom Delay and all the other republican Texas criminal politicians who illegally take money from big corporations and special interest.

9:44AM PST on Jan 16, 2011

down HERE, not down her! duh! anyhow- to janyce stockstill- you go, girl! i like your style of speaking!

9:39AM PST on Jan 16, 2011

hurray!!! yippee!!! at last!!! as a texan, and an avid supporter of the environment, i have spent countless hours writing/calling/petitioning my state politicians. every time i do, i get a form email from kay bailey explaining why she cannot do anything for the environment because it would not be good for business! (all written in political rhetoric, of course).
now, if only we could get rid of the rest of the republicans in government down her, we might make some progress!

8:35AM PST on Jan 16, 2011

Great News!

7:26AM PST on Jan 16, 2011

I'm a democrat in TX which is to say an endangered species and I live in one of the reddest districts in the state. It is my belief that many people in TX have been taken over by "The mind bending, brain washing body snatchers" as evidenced by their mindless voting. The voting that put a bunch of money hungry, United States government, history and law ignorant, back scratching, paranoid-gun toting, climate change denying, public school book rewriting leaders of the state of Texas (aka the state of confusion). Maybe, just maybe the fact that Kay Bailey Hutchison is not running is a turning point toward sanity. Guess I can still hope. The light at the end of the tunnel is not very bright but it is not gone yet.

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