Ted Cruz, the Texas Senator, who was the first Republican to enter the 2016 Presidential race has been noticeably quiet where 2024 is concerned. While he isn’t ruling out the potential of a 2024 run, he has stated that Senate is currently his top priority. During an interview, Cruz described the Senate as “the battlefield right now.” Though facing an election to keep his current job and passing on the presidential election seems to be a popular option for now as Senator Rick Scott, R-Florida, Senator Josh Hawley, R-Montana, and Senator Tom Cotton, R-Arkansas are all expressing the same sentiment.
This is a notable difference from 2016 when multiple Senators jumped into a primary that ended packed. Many strategize that a crowded field could make way for Trump to score as he had in 2016, which could be why we could see a less-than-crowded primary in an attempt to vote in “fresh blood.”
Though many GOP heavyweights, even Senator Lindsey Graham, R-South Carolina, have expressed support for Cruz if he were to run.
Cruz’s focus on his Senate bid follows a tough 2018 reelection fight against former Democratic Rep. Beto O’Rourke, who lost by 2.6 points. Combined, the two candidates raised close to $115 million, with O’Rourke bringing in more than $80 million. And Cruz may face another fight in 2024, with Texas and Florida the only conceivable pick-up opportunities for Democrats in a cycle that will have them mostly on defense — 23 of the party’s seats are up next year.
O’Rourke did not respond to a request for comment on whether he was considering a second Senate run against Cruz. After losing his gubernatorial bid against Texas Gov. Greg Abbott in 2022, he told the audience in his concession speech that “this may be one of the last times I get to talk in front of you all.”
Cruz’s staff has stated he is planning to hop into his reelection campaign soon hiring more staff and getting ahead of the race to defend his seat. Leaving a clear picture that this Senate seat may be what is important to the Texas Senator, at least for now.