Late on Monday, just 15 minutes before the deadline to file, Rep. Steve Stockman (R-TX) shocked the GOP establishment by placing his name on the ballot for March’s Republican primary and will face off with incumbent Sen. John Cornyn. Cornyn had thought that he was not going to face any serious challengers in this upcoming primary. Stockman, who was just elected to represent the 36th District last year, and previously served one term in Congress back in the ’90s, will surely carry Tea Party support in his quest to dethrone Cornyn.
The first place that Stockman went to break the news was World Net Daily, the uber-right, conspiracy driven website that is home to the rantings of Ted Nugent, Pat Buchanan and Joseph Farah, to name a few. WND published their story just as Stockman was filling his paperwork. In the article, Stockman stated that the main reason he was running against Cornyn is due to the Senator not having his fellow Texas Senator Ted Cruz’s back during the government shutdown over Obamacare.
“We are extremely disappointed in the way he treated his fellow congressmen and broke the 11th commandment and undermined (Sen.) Ted Cruz’s fight to stop Obamacare. And now, it looks like Cruz was right and Cornyn was wrong. He (Cornyn) sided with the president, essentially, in making sure Obamacare became law while Cruz did everything possible to stop it.
If you disagree with someone, that’s fine, but I really believe you should do it privately, not so publicly. He made a big show of removing his name from a letter supporting Cruz. We think he needs to be held accountable for his decisions, and we look forward to a vigorous campaign.”
In essence, Cornyn hurt Cruz’s feelings so Stockman feels he needs to stand up for his Tea Party brethren and run a campaign against a fellow conservative. And, believe me, John Cornyn is a VERY conservative Senator. In fact, the National Journal rated him as one of the most most conservative members of the Senate in 2012. We can only guess how nutty this primary fight will get as Stockman is obviously going to paint Cornyn as far too liberal. Remember, Stockman is the same guy who, when discussing the Violence Against Women Act, had this to say:
“This is a truly bad bill. This is helping the liberals, this is horrible. Unbelievable. What really bothers—it’s called a women’s act, but then they have men dressed up as women, they count that. Change-gender, or whatever. How is that—how is that a woman?”
This is the same guy that invited Ted Nugent as his special guest to the most recent State of the Union address. Stockman is the same man who threatened to bring up President Obama for impeachment due to the the President’s executive orders regarding gun control in the wake of the Sandy Hook shootings. Stockman also threatened impeachment again in September, this time after the Washington Yard shooting and President Obama once again implementing executive orders on gun control. So, yes, it will be an insane campaign.
Stockman will not be able to run for his Congressional seat at the same time, so he is putting everything on the line by running for the Senate. Therefore, it is quite possible that come January 2014, we will never see Stockman on Capitol Hill again. Currently, Stockman will have to get some Tea Party friends to start contributing to his campaign, as he only has $32,000 in his coffers, compared to Cornyn’s $7 million. I am sure Cruz and Co. will get on it, though. Also, start looking for some Koch Bros. funded SuperPACs to start popping up in Texas very soon.
This can only be good news for the Democrats. Texas Democrats were already planning on getting out the vote in 2014 due to Wendy Davis running for Governor. Now, it is quite possible that they may get a chance to run against Stockman for a Senate seat. Even if Stockman is unable to beat Cornyn in the primary there will be quite a bit of damage done. Cornyn will have to out-crazy Stockman in the primary campaign, and those ads will write themselves for the Democratic candidate. This was an early Christmas gift for Dems, as they went from having almost no chance at winning this seat to a pretty decent one with one last-minute filing of an application.
Justin Baragona is the Managing Editor at Politicus Sports as well as Senior Editor at PoliticusUSA. He was a political writer for 411Mania.com before joining PoliticusUSA. Politically, Justin considers himself a liberal but also a realist and pragmatist. Currently, Justin lives in St. Louis, MO and is married. Besides writing, he also runs his own business after spending a number of years in the corporate world. You can follow Justin on Twitter either with his personal handle (@justinbaragona) or the Sports site’s (@PoliticusSports).