This was expected, and now it’s official.
State Sen. Steve Ogden, a Bryan Republican and one of the Senate’s most powerful members as its chief budget writer, announced Thursday that he will not run for re-election next year.
The decision had been widely rumored for months.
Ogden’s departure promises an open seat that could attract several candidates, and could be a target for Democrats who would like to gain Senate seats, although the district is considered GOP territory. State Rep. Dan Gattis, R-Georgetown, has been mentioned repeatedly as a likely candidate. He did not return phone calls Thursday.
Gattis is generally considered to be the heir apparent for this seat. He doesn’t start out with a huge financial advantage – he had $81K on hand as of July. He would be a strong favorite to win if he’s the nominee, as would any decent Republican candidate – it’s a fairly red district, though not a hopeless one. A good Democrat with enough resources could make a race of it, and as open Senate seats are precious things, I feel confident that whoever does run will have the opportunity to get those resources. BOR and EoW have more.