Ted Cruz is fond of saying that when he began his run for U.S. Senate, he was at 2 percent in the polls against Texas Republican juggernaut David Dewhurst, the state’s lieutenant governor for nearly a decade.
Actually, the 41-year-old former state solicitor general seemed an even longer shot than that.
Gov. Rick Perry and much of the rest of the Republican establishment lined up to endorse Dewhurst for their party’s nomination to replace retiring U.S. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, and the party’s mainstream doesn’t lose much in Texas. After all, the state hasn’t elected a Democrat to statewide office in nearly 20 years.
But Cruz pulled off what had seemed an unthinkable upset Tuesday, and it wasn’t even close. He trounced Dewhurst by about 13 percentage points, shaking one of America’s reddest states to its political core.