Texas Senate Race Important Target For DC Conservative Organizations

Conservative groups — including the Club for Growth, FreedomWorks and Sen. Jim DeMint’s (R-S.C.) Senate Conservatives Fund — are pivoting toward Texas’s Senate race after their embarrassing defeat in Nebraska’s Senate primary.

The Tea Party-linked groups were riding high after helping to beat Sen. Dick Lugar (R-Ind.) in his primary 10 days ago. But they hit a low this week when their preferred candidate in Nebraska’s Senate primary finished a distant third after they combined to spend $2.5 million on the race.

Now Texas looms large as a chance for redemption — and for the groups to show that Indiana was not a fluke.

Texas, Utah, Arizona and Wisconsin remain the big Senate races that at least some of the groups are targeting; all three of them are involved in Texas. 

The groups will receive a lot of credit if they can help former Texas Solicitor General Ted Cruz (R) make the runoff election against Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst (R) — but if Dewhurst wins the primary on the first round with 50 percent of the vote, Washington Republicans will take the groups less seriously.

“There’s a lot for them to play for within the party in these next couple of races,” said Republican strategist Ford O’Connell. “Their sole goal is to hold Republicans’ feet to the fire, and if they can’t do that in these races, they have a problem.”

Read more from Cameron Joseph at The Hill

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published this page in In The News 2012-05-18 09:45:00 -0400
Analysis & Political Strategy