As expected, Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-Texas) has announced that she will stay in the Senate for the remainder of her term. She had previously pledged to resign her seat early during her ill-fated run for governor. But she never gained much ground in the primary against Gov. Rick Perry and didn’t stand to gain much from campaigning against him full time. Once she lost the primary in the first round, it stood to reason she’d stay in Washington.
While the move isn’t surprising, it is a setback for the field of candidates who were vying to replace her — one of whom would have gotten a head start thanks to an interim appointment by Perry. The Republican frontrunner was widely believed to be Texas Railroad Commissioner Michael Williams. Williams is a rising conservative star who happens to be black, very popular among the the supposedly racist Tea Party activists.