Houston Democrat Amanda Edwards announced Thursday she is running for U.S. Senate against Republican John Cornyn. She would be the first African-American from Texas in the U.S. Senate.
“We need leadership that is fueled by purpose, bigger than self,” Edwards says in an uplifting video featuring a gospel choir and iconic Texans Ann Richards and Barbara Jordan. The race, she says, “is about people, not politics.”
Edwards, an attorney who has represented more than 2 million people on the Houston City Council, is running on what she calls “transformative change.” Access to health care is personal for her: She witnessed her father’s battle with cancer and is doing it all over again now with her mother.
“My father was diagnosed with cancer when I was a child — that experience transformed me into the leader I am today,” Edwards said in a statement. “He passed when I was 17. I saw first-hand how access to high-quality health care added years to his life. I’m serious about implementing changes that transform the lives of regular people across our state: expanding access to high-quality, affordable health care, reducing prescription drug costs, and laying the groundwork for an economy of the future that leaves no one behind.”
Wasting no time, the Cornyn campaign responded early Thursday to Edwards’ entry into the race by attacking her progressive record.
“Councilwoman Edwards is a true progressive with a record that would make Elizabeth Warren jealous,” his campaign said per the Texas Tribune’s Patrick Svitek.
Cornyn’s goal is to define the leading Democrats in the race early and often, despite the election being 16 months away.
First, however, Edwards will have to make it out of an increasingly crowded Democratic primary. She joins Chris Bell, MJ Hegar, and Sema Hernandez in that bid. State Sen. Royce West from Dallas is expected to make his own announcement for the seat on Monday.
Edwards earned her J.D. from Harvard Law School.
This is a developing story and will be updated. Photo: Amandafortexas.com