Fort Worth City Councilman Joel Burns announced on Wednesday that he will not run to succeed Wendy Davis in the state Senate.
Burns, who replaced Davis on the City Council in 2007, had emerged as a top Democratic contender for the Senate seat after Davis announced her bid for governor earlier this month. But in an email to supporters on Wednesday, first reported by the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Burns said he will not enter the race.
“After many weeks of thought and consideration, my next steps have became very clear to me,” Burns wrote in the email, which he also posted on his Facebook page. “And I want to share with you — my many friends, neighbors and supporters — my decision: Quite simply, the job I most want is the one I already have.”
Burns was my first choice to run for the seat, so I’m disappointed by this. There are other candidates that had been looking at this, so I’m sure someone will step up and run. It was never going to be an easy hold, and if Joel Burns didn’t think he was the right candidate at this time, then so be it.
One more thing:
The fight to replace Davis will be one of the state’s most closely watched races next year. Without her seat, which Davis has won twice in a swing district that leans Republican, Democrats would be left with only 11 seats in the Senate, bringing Republicans within one seat of the two-thirds majority needed in the chamber to bring legislation to the floor for a vote.
The original version of this story said that the loss of Davis’ seat would give the Rs the numbers they needed to overcome the two thirds rule, assuming it still means something in 2015. What Davis gave the Dems was a cushion, but even if we lose her seat the numbers are still there to block bills as needed, and if allowed. I’ve seen some confusion on this point elsewhere, so let me assert my authority here as someone who has a degree in math: 11/31 > 1/3. Put another way, 20/31 < 2/3. It’s not that complicated.