Tom Cotton, the GOP nominee for Arkansas 4th district seat, will face off against the winner of a Democratic runoff in November and is expected to win the open seat.
“Fighting to repeal Obamacare, to reform our tax code and lower our tax rates, to get the debt crisis under control and finally confront it and to keep America strong in the world and safe at home,” he said when asked the reasons he is running.
National and state Republicans expect him to be an outsized presence on Capitol Hill, with many GOP operatives already using the “rising star” label to describe him.
The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee has a different set of epithets. A press release recently called him a “Washington insider” and slammed his “completely out of touch” agenda.
Cotton has been endorsed by the powerful anti-tax Club for Growth, the conservative website RedState.com, Citizens United and Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.).
He will face the winner of a Democratic runoff — either attorney Q. Byrum Hurst or state Sen. Gene Jeffress — in the general election.
Fellow Arkansas GOP Rep. Tim Griffin, a JAG officer in the Army Reserves, said he first met Cotton in person at Fort Campbell, Ky., when they were both preparing to ship out to Iraq.
Griffin praised Cotton’s political acumen and his discipline on the campaign trail. He expects Cotton not only to easily win, but to become a Congressman who leads.
“He’ll be a high-energy Member,” Griffin said. “I think he’s someone who is going to be a force from day one. The sky’s the limit for him down the road.”
Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., right, hugs Harold Schaitberger, General President of the International Association of Fire Fighters, after the Congressman spoke at the IAFF's Legislative Conference General Session at the Hyatt Regency on Capitol Hill, March 9, 2015. The day featured addresses by members of Congress and Vice President Joe Biden.