Cornyn to run for reelection in 2020

Cornyn to run for reelection in 2020
© Greg Nash

Sen. John CornynJohn CornynThe Hill's Morning Report - Trump on defense over economic jitters Democrats keen to take on Cornyn despite formidable challenges The Hill's Campaign Report: Battle for Senate begins to take shape MORE (R-Texas) said on Sunday that he will run for reelection in 2020.

"You know, I'm the vote counter for the Senate now as the majority whip, and I think it's frankly helpful, given my seniority and my position in leadership, to continue to serve," Cornyn said at the Texas Tribune festival.

He added that he would stay in the Senate "as long as Texans will have me" and that his seniority has benefits for the state, including a larger initial package of recovery aid for Hurricane Harvey.

Cornyn is the Senate's second-ranking Republican. He is term-limited as majority whip after 2018.

The Texas Republican defeated several primary opponents, including then-Rep. Steve StockmanStephen (Steve) Ernest StockmanFormer aide sentenced for helping ex-congressman in fraud scheme Former congressman sentenced to 10 years in prison for campaign finance scheme Rising expectations could change North Korea forever MORE, in 2014 and won the general election with more than 61 percent of the vote.

Cornyn also said on Sunday that he is endorsing Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward Cruz3 real problems Republicans need to address to win in 2020 The Hill's Morning Report - Trump on defense over economic jitters Democrats keen to take on Cornyn despite formidable challenges MORE (R-Texas) for his 2018 reelection bid.

Cruz, as one of the Senate's most vocal conservatives, has at times frustrated leadership with his tactics and accused Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellTrump faces crucial decisions on economy, guns Are Democrats turning Trump-like? House Democrat calls for gun control: Cities can ban plastic straws but 'we can't ban assault weapons?' MORE (R-Ky.) of lying from the Senate floor.

"I told him I’d support him in his reelection, and I think it’s important to do so to send the message that Texans, when it comes to something like the recovery after this natural disaster, that we are going to stand together and not be distracted," Cornyn said on Sunday.

Cornyn had previously declined to endorse Cruz.

Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Texas) has been floated as potential primary challenger to Cruz.

"I'm not going to get involved in any primary races particularly with my colleagues in the Senate," Cornyn told CNN last year, when asked about the potential matchup. "We'll see what happens, but we've got plenty to worry about between now and November 2016 before we start worrying about November 2018."

--This report was updated at 1:28 p.m.