The already crowded race for Texas Attorney General is about to get a major shakeup. Congressman Louie Gohmert (R-TX) will challenge incumbent Attorney General Ken Paxton in the 2022 Republican Primary, according to a reliable source who spoke with the congressman firsthand about his intentions.
Representing Texas’ 1st Congressional District in the northeastern part of the state, Gohmert is one of the House’s most conservative members, and has built a reputation as a rightwing flamethrower.
However, before running for Congress, he was a respected state district judge, and has extensive legal experience. Now he is looking to put that experience to work as attorney general.
Paxton has found himself emeshed in a series of scandals, including the resignation of much of his senior staff, a state bar investigation, and an indictment on securities fraud charges that has been ongoing since 2015. Many Republicans are worried that Paxton’s baggage could enable a Democrat to beat him in the general election.
Paxton is already facing multiple serious primary challengers from within the Republican Party: Land Commissioner George P. Bush, Former Supreme Court Justice Eva Guzman, and State Rep. Matt Krause (R-Fort Worth). According to sources, Gohmert is expected to announce his candidacy very soon.
Gohmert’s entry into the race comes after a poll conducted by the University of Texas and the Texas Tribune showed Paxton with a substantial lead over his current challengers. Although none of the polls have included Gohmert, his national name ID and popularity with the Republican base would likely make him the frontrunner to take on Paxton in the primary.