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Cornyn to run for reelection in 2020

Cornyn to run for reelection in 2020
© Greg Nash

Sen. John CornynJohn CornynFive takeaways from Cruz, O'Rourke debate showdown Live coverage: Cruz faces O'Rourke in Texas debate showdown Trump, Feinstein feud intensifies over appeals court nominees 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 StockmanRising expectations could change North Korea forever When did we stop thinking big? Save the International Space Station Former Texas congressman found guilty of 23 felonies 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 CruzO'Rourke gives 'a definitive no' to possibility of running in 2020 Vicente Fox endorses Beto O'Rourke in Texas Senate race Beto O'Rourke on impeachment: 'There is enough there to proceed' 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 McConnellOvernight Health Care — Presented by Purdue Pharma — Trump says GOP will support pre-existing condition protections | McConnell defends ObamaCare lawsuit | Dems raise new questions for HHS on child separations Poll finds Dems prioritize health care, GOP picks lower taxes when it's time to vote The Hill's 12:30 Report — Mnuchin won't attend Saudi conference | Pompeo advises giving Saudis 'few more days' to investigate | Trump threatens military action over caravan 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.