Halter Seriously Considering’ Running for Snyder’s Seat
In a move that will certainly give hope to Democrats worried about holding the seat of retiring Rep. Vic Snyder (D-Ark.), Lt. Gov. Bill Halter (D) acknowledged Monday that he is now seriously considering running in the Little Rock-based 2nd district this fall.“I have received many telephone calls from Arkansans offering me encouragement and support since Congressman Vic Snyder announced he would not seek re-election,— Halter said in a statement released through a Virginia-based Democratic consultant who has worked on his previous campaigns. “I am grateful, I am listening and I am now seriously considering all options. These considerations center on where to best fight for better jobs and greater opportunities for Arkansans.—Democrats in Washington were quick to float Halter’s name on Friday just hours after Snyder announced his retirement. The lieutenant governor’s high name recognition and statewide fundraising network should help him quickly put together a serious campaign and catch up in the money chase to attorney Tim Griffin (R), who is expected to report having just more than $315,000 in cash on hand as of Dec. 31.A House bid by Halter would be doubly good news for Democrats in Arkansas, as he has been rumored to be mulling a primary challenge to Sen. Blanche Lincoln (D), who is facing a tough re-election battle of her own this fall.Griffin spokesman Ryan James said Monday that their camp “would not be surprised— if Halter runs for Congress.But even if Halter does get in, “the focus of the Griffin campaign is the same as it was— before Snyder announced his retirement, James said. “We are stressing our conservative values.—Besides Halter, state Speaker Robbie Wills (D) and Sen. Joyce Elliott (D) have told state media outlets that they are considering running. Other potential Democratic candidates whose names have been floated are Little Rock Mayor Mark Stodola, state Sen. Shane Broadway and state Public Service Commissioner Paul Suskie.The 2nd district is socially conservative territory that Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) carried in the 2008 presidential contest by a 10-point margin.