The decision hinges on whether the House and Senate pass the current congressional redistricting maps early next week. Sources say that Williams could exit the Senate race before next Wednesday's Tribune forum featuring the leading intended candidates in the race...Other announced or likely candidates for Hutchison's Senate seat include former solicitor general Ted Cruz, Railroad Commission Chair Elizabeth Ames Jones, former Dallas Mayor Tom Leppert and former Texas Secretary of State Roger Williams. Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst and state Sen. Dan Patrick (R-Houston) are considering entering the Senate race.
Williams' campaign consultant Corbin Casteel, confirmed the switch was impending. "Commissioner Williams has lived in Arlington since the early 90s when he returned to Texas after working for Presidents Reagan and Bush," Casteel said in a statement to the Tribune. "His home has been drawn into a newly created Congressional district. He has received a great deal of encouragement to transition from the Senate race to run for Congress. Provided the new district does not change significantly, he will pursue the new congressional seat."
FEC filings show that Williams' Senate campaign raised a disappointing $418,000 in the first quarter of 2011. Running a campaign for the U.S. Senate, even at the primary level, is something of a high stakes poker game, and the players need to ante up at least $1 million if they want a seat at the table. Congressional contests are much less costly, and the amount Williams has raised should be sufficient, at least for now, to run in a primary where he is sure to have fewer GOP rivals.