Texas Republican Primary Heats Up
What happens to a party after Rick Perry heads toward the exit and Ted Cruz walks in the door?
The answer will play out for the first time in Texas on Tuesday in a primary election that has been called a “primary race on steroids.” It is the result of the two recent seismic shifts in the Texas Republican landscape: Mr. Perry’s decision to step down after serving longer than any other governor in state history and Mr. Cruz’s rise to power as a senator, which upended the establishment and pushed the party’s political center of gravity even farther to the right.
The result is an agitated, high-decibel free-for-all in a state that has long served as a national laboratory for Republican ideas and leaders.
Mr. Perry’s announcement in July that he would not seek a fourth term has caused extraordinary turnover, as Republican officeholders try to trade in old jobs for more powerful ones, or retire, in a state where Republicans hold every statewide elected office.