Republican Congressman Tom Delay and Democratic candidate Nick Lampson could face a long, painful battle for Congressional District 22. Lampson served as a U.S. Congressman from 1996 to 2004, when he lost reelection to Republican Ted Poe after Texas underwent Congressional redistricting. He's now running against Tom Delay in a district that leans heavily to Republicans, but says this will be a race about issues and not politics.
While many might welcome a campaign about issues rather than politics, this campaign likely won't be pretty. Congressman Delay could be in the midst of a trial over bribery charges in the heart of election season. Rice University Professor and Dean of the School of Social Sciences Dr. Bob Stein says this race could draw a lot of mud-slinging, and Republicans could turn on Delay to protect the party.
Stein says if that happens the campaign will draw national attention and could weaken the public image of the Republican party. He says Lampson is taking a gamble on running in District 22, but his chances against Delay, even in a strong Republican district, are good.
Delay faces charges of money laundering and will go to trial this year. If he does not make it on the ticket, other possible candidates could be State Senator Kyle Janek or State Representative Martha Wong.