Sen Ted Cruz, R-Texas received some more good news in advance of his campaign for a second term as a United States senator. Mathew Dowd, a political commentator and former official in the Bush 43 White House, has declined to launch an independent bid for Cruz’s seat. Previously, Democratic Rep Joaquin Castro decided to pass on a run against Cruz. That leaves only Rep. Beto O’Rourke as a Cruz challenger, thus far.

Cruz’s first term in the United States Senate has been if nothing else very exciting. First elected in 2012 as a Tea Party supported candidate, Cruz had set himself as an opponent of President Barack’s policies, especially in health care reform and illegal immigration.

One fight over Obamacare funding led to a brief government shutdown, for which Cruz was blamed by the media and even some of his fellow Republican senators. Nevertheless, the Republicans captured the Senate in the next midterm elections, a development the vindicated Cruz to some extent.

Cruz’s run for president in 2016 was met with failure, and the candidate reacted badly against the outrageous behavior Donald Trump, the eventual winner, visited upon him and his family. He refused to endorse Trump at the Republican National Convention, angering many party loyalists and Trump supporters

Since the election, Cruz has made his peace with President Trump and the two men have achieved a kind of tense peace.

In the meantime, Cruz has settled down to becoming a serious senator, for example crafting and passing NASA authorization and commercial space legislation. He has proposed a bill that would use seized assets of drug kingpins to build the so-called southern border wall, one of the prime priorities of President Trump that is being stymied by Senate Democrats.

Matthew Dowd very likely would not have succeeded in an attempt at an independent run for the Senate. But he could have acted as a spoiler, throwing the election to a Democrat. That prospect was likely one factor in his declining to run.

In the meantime, Rep. Michael McCaul, R-Texas is still mulling a primary challenge to Cruz.

McCaul had been urged to run by some Republican officials who had been angry with the senator for his rift with Trump. More recently, McCaul has declined to reveal whether he is still considering such a run.

Cruz is taking no chances. He has started to rise an immense election war chest and is spending time visiting constituents around the state to listen to their concerns. Cruz remains the odds-on favorite to win in 2018 midterms. But he refused to fall into complacency. He knows that he will have to work for a second term.