Lone Star Primary

More bloodletting is ahead for Republicans in Texas, as Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst was knocked into a Senate runoff with former state solicitor Ted Cruz. Dewhurst won 45%, Cruz 33%, former Dallas mayor Tom Leppert 13%, and former pro football star and ESPN “analyst” Craig James a booming 4%.

The low-profile Democratic Senate primary produced another runoff, with former state rep. Paul Sadler (35%) facing Grady Yarbrough (26%).

The CW was that Cruz would have all the momentum if he managed to force a runoff with Dewhurst. But with two months to go before the July 31 runoff, and with plenty of state and national money available to both candidates, the contest will almost certainly get intense and toxic. Dewhurst’s candidacy is a major power/ego test for Rick Perry, and the Club for Growth/Jim DeMint forces backing Cruz could use another signature purge victory to buttress the Indiana results. Expect both candidates to spend weeks calling each other godless liberals and scum-sucking crooks.

Ed Kilgore

Ed Kilgore, a Monthly contributing editor, is a columnist for the Daily Intelligencer, New York magazine’s politics blog, and the managing editor for the Democratic Strategist.