After 2020’s redistricting, Allred’s district became safely Democratic, meaning he could likely hold his current seat for as long as he chooses. His decision to give it up to run for Senate instead, in a state where his party has struggled to win statewide, sets up a potentially high-profile general election race next fall.
Cruz, now serving his second term in the Senate, faced a tougher-than-expected challenge from then-Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-Texas) in 2018. Though O’Rourke lost by about 2.6 percentage points, the former House member developed a national profile that he parlayed into an unsuccessful 2020 presidential run.
Allred may well follow O’Rourke’s model. Even if he doesn’t win, he will raise his political cachet with a 2024 run against Cruz — giving himself national exposure and building a massive donor list.
He has demonstrated an ability to excite Democrats and pick up independents or moderate Republicans, earning endorsements from the AFL-CIO and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce for his congressional runs.