Texas Senator Ted Cruz will be the first candidate to formally declare his candidacy for president in 2016, with an announcement scheduled for today, March 23. The Houston Chronicle reports:
Sen. Ted Cruz plans to announce Monday that he will run for president of the United States, accelerating his already rapid three-year rise from a tea party insurgent in Texas into a divisive political force in Washington.
Cruz will launch a presidential bid outright rather than form an exploratory committee, said senior advisers with direct knowledge of his plans, who spoke on condition of anonymity because an official announcement had not been made yet. They say he is done exploring and is now ready to become the first Republican presidential candidate.
The senator is scheduled to speak Monday at a convocation ceremony at Liberty University in Virginia, where he is expected to declare his campaign for the presidency.
Over the course of the primary campaign, Cruz will aim to raise between $40 million and $50 million, according to advisers, and dominate with the same tea party voters who supported his underdog Senate campaign in 2012. But the key to victory, Cruz advisers believe, is to be the second choice of enough voters in the party's libertarian and social conservative wings to cobble together a coalition to defeat the chosen candidate of the Republican establishment…
By being the first to declare, Cruz will likely garner a boost in media attention. Other candidates will be getting in over the next several months. The only other candidate with a fairly firm date for announcing is Senator Rand Paul, expected to announce on April 7 according to this report from the Washington Times.