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Cooke County Judge exploring run for 13th Congressional District seat

Cooke County Judge Jason Brinkley announced Wednesday he is considering a run for U.S. Congress.

In a press release, Brinkley indicated he has formed an exploratory committee to consider seeking the Texas 13th Congressional District seat in the U.S. House of Representatives.

U.S. Rep. Mac Thornberry announced Monday he was not seeking reelection in 2020 to represent the 13th District. Thornberry has represented the district since 1995.

“I would like to thank Congressman Thornberry for the years of hard work and dedication that he has given our district and our nation over the past several years. I wish him and Sally and their family all the best,” Brinkley said in the release.

Brinkley, a Republican, took office for his first term as county judge in 2015. He ran unopposed for his second term, which began this year. Before his time as county judge, Brinkley was Precinct 4 justice of the peace for six years.

“As a local elected official for over 10 years, I know what it takes to get the job done,” Brinkley said in the release. “The 13th Congressional District needs a representative with conservative values that will work to find resolutions to real world problems facing our residents.

“We need a candidate that offers more than just a sound bite, someone who puts forth comprehensive solutions to complex issues.”

Elaine Hays, an Amarillo city council member, is also forming an exploratory committee. She ran against Thornberry in 2014.

The Texas 13th Congressional District spans 44 counties in North Texas and the Panhandle, including Cooke County. It’s the strongest Republican area in the nation, according to the Cooke Partisan Voting Index.

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