Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-Texas) will announce on Friday that he’ll challenge Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzSenate advances public lands bill in late-night vote The Hill’s Morning Report – Trump’s public standing sags after Floyd protests GOP senators introduce resolution opposing calls to defund the police MORE (R-Texas) in 2018, according to the Houston Chronicle.
O’Rourke will reportedly make the announcement in his hometown of El Paso, which he has represented since 2013.
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In an email to supporters last week, the O’Rourke campaign teased an unspecified “big announcement.”
O’Rourke has previously said he’s strongly considering running against Cruz, who unsuccessfully ran for the GOP presidential nomination in 2016.
“It’s very likely that I will run for Senate in 2018,” O’Rourke told the Texas Tribune earlier this year.
O’Rourke will likely face a steep uphill battle running in a red state against the conservative firebrand. Rep. Joaquin Castro (D-Texas), who told the Austin American-Statesman in mid-February that he’d make a decision in eight weeks, is among the other Texas Democrats mulling a run.
The El Paso congressman has said that Castro’s decision will have no impact on whether or not he decides to run and has called him a “good friend.”
O’Rourke received recent national attention when he embarked on a bipartisan road trip from Texas to Washington, D.C. with colleague Rep. Will Hurd (R-Texas).
With Democrats facing a tough Senate, the Texas Senate race would likely not receive national resources.
Democrats need to defend 25 seats in 2018, including 10 in states that President Trump carried in the 2016 election.
Even with demographic changes in Texas that favor Democrats, the Senate seat is likely to remain in GOP hands.