Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-Texas) announced Thursday that she will not run for re-election in 2012, making official a decision that many predicted was forthcoming.
According to the Dallas Morning News, Hutchison said in a letter to supporters that she is making her announcement now to allow Republicans sufficient time to campaign for a seat that is expected to be hotly contested. The winner of the March 2012 Republican primary will likely be the favorite to win that year’s general election.
“I am announcing today that I will not be a candidate for re-election in 2012,” she wrote. “That should give the people of Texas ample time to consider who my successor will be.”
Hutchison, who serves as an appointed adviser to Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) was defeated last year in the GOP gubernatorial primary. Hutchison had long targeted the Texas governorship, and speculation began immediately following her loss that she would retire in 2012.
Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, speaks with reporters in the Capitol after a speech on the Senate floor that accused the CIA of searching computers set up for Congressional staff for their research of interrogation programs.