Texas Republican U.S. Senate candidates David Dewhurst and Ted Cruz are targeting each other specifically in new campaign ads. Recent polls show Lt. Governor Dewhurst leading the crowded GOP primary field, but former Solicitor General Cruz is a solid second and gaining ground.
Dewhurst recently released a statewide television ad criticizing Cruz for representing a Chinese company that was successfully sued for fraud by an American businessman. Now Cruz has spent an estimated half-a-million dollars for two statewide ads of its own, one specifically attacking Dewhurst.
Mark Jones, Chairman of the Political Science Department at RiceUniversity, tells KTRH it's a smart move by the Cruz campaign, even though it's a major money drain.
"It's a necessary risk that they have to take because they cannot let David Dewhurst define who Ted Cruz is."
In the broader picture, Jones sees the battle as a sign that Cruz is the most viable challenger to the Lt. Governor. "The fact the Dewhurst campaign is going negative indicates they're worried about the Cruz campaign. Otherwise they'd be ignoring Ted Cruz."