Republican Sen. Tom Cotton of Arkansas is set to announce a bid for the seat vacated by Democratic Sen. Mark Pryor in 2018, sources told The Hill.
The announcement is likely to come in the coming weeks, according to a person familiar with the situation, who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss the ongoing race.
The person said Cotton is expected to announce his bid for Senate on Thursday.
Cotton, who is one of the most senior members of the Cotton-Pryor team, has emerged as a leading contender in the race and has emerged a strong candidate in recent weeks.
He has not announced a formal campaign.
He is a member of the conservative Tea Party faction in the Senate and has criticized President Donald Trump.
Cotton’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
The former senator from Arkansas is viewed favorably by Democrats and some Republicans, who see his experience in the GOP and strong record of supporting the poor, working class and working class families as an asset to the GOP.
Cotton has not yet announced his intentions to run for re-election, and could announce his candidacy this week, The Hill’s Matt Zapotosky reported.
The race is considered to be one of only two Senate races in the country with a clear Democratic front-runner.
A person familiar said the Cotton campaign has been aggressively courting the public, offering a $2,700 campaign donation to every registered voter who attended a caucus on Tuesday.
The campaign has also launched an online ad campaign featuring former Arkansas Gov.
Mike Huckabee, who served as a top aide to Trump during the 2016 campaign.
A former Arkansas state senator, Toomeys campaign has faced intense scrutiny from the left and some conservatives.
It has faced criticism for not making the Democratic side of the race more competitive.
The two major Democratic candidates, former Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge and former U.S. Rep. Steny Hoyer of Maryland, have not yet formally announced their campaigns.
Toomeies campaign has not formally announced a candidate, but he has said that he will run as an independent.
He told The Washington Post in August that he would not be running as an “independent,” but would run as a “Republican” if needed.