Long time Texas State Senator, Florence Shapiro (R – Plano) announced on Monday, September 19, that she will not run for re-election, which makes a bid for a Senate seat one step easier for local State Rep. Ken Paxton (R- McKinney). The unofficial word around town for weeks now has been that Paxton would run for Shapiro’s seat. This is what Paxton had to say on Facebook.
“It is an honor to serve the citizens of Collin County as their conservative voice in the Texas Legislature. This afternoon, (Monday) I have already received many calls of support, and I will soon be making a formal announcement concerning my plans to continue serving North Texas”
According to the Texas Tribune, Shapiro will be moving into a career in the private sector with an education company.
“I’m just ready for a new challenge,” she said in an interview. Shapiro, 63, has been in public office at the city or state level since 1979. “I have an old friend — a former mayor of Fort Worth — who always asks me, ‘When are you going to grow up?’ I guess I’m ready to grow up.” She said she’s in final negotiations for a job with an education company; she won’t name the firm but said she won’t be working on its Texas business.
State Rep. Ken Paxton, R-McKinney, who sought to topple House Speaker Joe Straus at the start of the 2011 legislative session, starts as a strong replacement candidate, though the field could quickly expand for a seat in the Senate; turnover there is low, and these don’t come up that often. He wasn’t immediately available for comment. Shapiro said she expects several candidates to get into the race. She’s not endorsing anyone right now.