Less than 24 hours after state Sen. Florence Shapiro announced she won't be running for another term, two Republicans have jumped at the chance to take over her suburban district, north of Dallas.
State Rep. Ken Paxton, R-McKinney, announced this morning on the Mark Davis show that he will run for the Senate District 8 seat. Paxton gained statewide attention last year by campaigning to unseat House Speaker Joe Straus.
Davis said Shapiro, first elected to the Senate in 1993, will be a tough person to replace.
"Those are big pumps to fill and that's not a foot size argument, it's a metaphor," Davis said.
Paxton isn't the first candidate in the race. That honor goes to Scott O'Grady, a former air force pilot who made the cover of TIME after surviving being shot down in Bosnia in 1995. O'Grady has been active in Republican politics for years. This year, O'Grady has been busy campaigning in Iowa on behalf of Strong America Now, a nonprofit urging presidential candidates to pledge to erase the national deficit by 2017 using so-called Lean Six Sigma practices.
“Senator Shapiro is a valued friend and role model," O'Grady said in a statement. "She has set the bar high with her distinguished career as a Republican leader in the State Senate. If elected to continue her work in the State Senate, I will call upon her as a valued mentor and adviser to serve our community and state."