After much speculation, according to reports today, Tom Cotton will announce his candidacy for Arkansas’s Senate seat in 2014, challenging incumbent Democrat Mark Pryor. As National Review Online reported earlier this week, Cotton has been clearly poised to run for months: He’s been fundraising and connecting with key Republican donors in Arkansas and across the country, efforts that prompted state Democrats to attack Cotton in super-PAC ads even before he’d announced a run. A Cotton candidacy puts Pryor, his already-vulnerable seat, and Senate Democrats in a tough spot.
In an e-mail, Cotton’s campaign announced that the congressman, who served in both Iraq and Afghanistan, will hold a barbecue at the community center in his hometown of Dardanelle, Ark., next week, where he “looks forward to sharing his plans to continue [fighting for Arkansas’s value] in the coming year.”
Cotton, a Harvard Law School graduate, has already made a name for himself in his first seven months in Congress with his strong stances on national defense and foreign policy. He has also been a vocal opponent in the House of the Gang of Eight’s immigration-reform bill, for which Pryor voted earlier this month.
Pryor’s campaign has already launched a series of attacks on the congressman, saying the decision shows “he has put his own political career ahead of the people of Arkansas.”