Greg Sowards: ‘There will be no one to my right’ in GOP primary
Republican Senate candidate Greg Sowards told Politico Tuesday that no candidate in the Republican primary would be further to the right than he is. Sowards also said he didn’t believe that Rep. Steve Pearce would enter the Republican primary.
“There will be no one to my right, and I believe the other candidates are more conglomerated around the moderate area,” Sowards said, according to David Cantanes. “I don’t see how anyone would get between me and conservative principles. They can go to the loon right, which is, as far as I’m concerned, like coming back around on the left.”
Sowards also said that Pearce supporters had told him they would oppose a second Senate run from the Republican congressman. Pearce ran for Senate in 2008 and won a hard-fought primary against Heather Wilson. Pearce then went on to lose the general election to Tom Udall.
Pearce, like Wilson, left his seat in the U.S. House to make the unsuccessful run for Senate. Pearce regained the seat in 2010 from Democrat Harry Teague.
Pearce spokesman Eric Layer told Politico, “I seriously doubt that Congressman Pearce’s supporters are in close contact with Mr. Sowards.”
Sowards made the comments while on a trip to speak to conservative groups that he hopes will support his Senate bid in 2012.
Wilson is considered the only top-tier candidate for the seat to be vacated by U.S. Sen. Jeff Bingaman, who announced his retirement on Feb. 18. Columnist William S. English is also running for Senate, while Pearce and Lt. Gov. John Sanchez are considering runs.
There are no announced candidates on the Democratic side, though U.S. Reps. Martin Heinrich and Ben Ray Luján, State Auditor Hector Balderas and former Lt. Gov. Diane Denish have all either said they are looking at Senate runs or have been reportedly looking to run for Senate.