Kay Bailey Hutchison reverses herself, says she won’t quit Senate

Mcclatchy Newspapers

Nearly four weeks after losing her bid to unseat Texas Gov. Rick Perry, Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison has abandoned plans to resign from the Senate, saying she intends to serve out her term to fight the growth of the federal government.

“For family reasons, I had planned to begin making a transition home to Texas this spring,” Hutchison said at a hurriedly called news conference Wednesday in San Antonio. “But it is clear to me that the stakes in our nation’s Capitol have never been higher.”

Hutchison’s pledge to finish the two-plus years left in her term contrasted with her earlier promises to give up her Senate seat regardless of the outcome of her unsuccessful race against Perry in the March 2 Republican gubernatorial primary. Hutchison initially said she would quit in late 2009, but she altered the timetable to peg her departure at some point after the primary.

Hutchison said colleagues and constituents had urged her to stay and fight the policies of the Obama administration amid continued skirmishes on healthcare and environmental legislation.