The race to replace John Cornyn is heating up

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More Democrats are lining up to unseat Sen. John Cornyn.

Dallas area State Senator Royce West announced Wednesday that he would make a “special announcement” two weeks from now. Insiders expect him to run for U.S. Senate.

Royce would be the sixth declared or all-but-declared candidate to enter the Democratic primary for Senate, joining Air Force pilot MJ Hegar, former U.S. Rep. Chris Bell, organizer Sema Hernandez, Beaumont NAACP chair Michael Cooper, and former candidate for governor Adrian Ocegueda. Houston city council member Amanda Edwards is strongly considering getting into the race.

Weighing in on Royce’s likely candidacy, Cornyn praised his many years of government service.

Bell, who represented Houston in Congress between 2003 and 2005 before returning to practice law, is the most recent Democrat to officially declare. Bell filed papers with the Federal Election Commission last week, telling the Texas Tribune he was “definitely planning to run.”

Regardless of which Democrat comes out on top in the primary, Cornyn appears to be bracing for the campaign of his life. 

“The tectonic plates shifted in Texas in 2018 and I think everybody realized we need to do something different and to address those concerns or else we’re in trouble,” Cornyn told Politico earlier this year.

So far, Cornyn has raised $7.7 million in campaign contributions for his re-election, according to the most recent Federal Election Commission figures. 

Hegar, the only Democratic candidate to announce their funding haul, raised $1 million since announcing her campaign in April.

Photo by Kin Man Hui, Staff Photographer/San Antonio Express-News

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