At a meeting of the True Texas Project in Northeast Tarrant County, State Sen. Pat Fallon (R–Prosper) surprised attendees by officially announcing he is creating an exploratory committee to potentially take on U.S. Sen. John Cornyn in the 2020 Republican Primary.

Fallon said the decision was one that was informed by months of prayer and consideration, as he failed to see a viable conservative challenger to Cornyn step up to the plate.

“Beto O’Rourke energized the left,” Fallon told the crowd. “What would happen in Texas if we could finally have a candidate that energized the right? I have an eight-year record to prove that.”

Though Fallon spent the majority of his announcement discussing his background, he also took time to highlight flaws in Cornyn’s record, specifically pointing towards his repeated votes for debt level increases.

“If you think the incumbent cares about you and reflects your values, by all means, keep him,” said Fallon.

“Who do you think will be a better general election candidate … to energize the base and every right-of-center voter in the state. Do you think it’s the incumbent?”

Should he enter the race, Fallon promised to work hard, saying, “If we do choose to do this, then I will work every day until the primary to be all over the state, because you deserve nothing less.”

Since entering the U.S. Senate in 2002, Cornyn has gradually disappointed conservatives with his voting record. While quick to tout his “rise to leadership,” serving until recently as the majority whip, his conservative record has left much to be desired. Currently, Cornyn holds a rating of 38 percent on the FreedomWorks Congressional Scorecard and a lifetime average of just a 70.

Fallon, by contrast, earned an 80 on the Fiscal Responsibility Index during the most recent legislative session and has a lifetime A average.

Should he officially enter the race, Fallon is joined in the Republican primary field by Dwayne Stovall, who recently abandoned an independent run for Senate.

The primary election will take place on March 3, 2020. Fallon says a final decision will be made in the coming days.

Brandon Waltens

Brandon serves as the Managing Editor for Texas Scorecard. After managing successful campaigns for top conservative legislators and serving as a Chief of Staff in the Texas Capitol, Brandon moved outside the dome in order to shine a spotlight on conservative victories and establishment corruption in Austin. @bwaltens