LITTLE ROCK — U.S. Sen. Mark Pryor filed for re-election at the state Capitol Friday, officially entering into one of the most closely watched Senate races in the country.
“I look forward to traveling our state over the next eight months and highlighting my work on behalf of Arkansans,” said the Democrat, who was first elected to the Senate in 2002 and re-elected without a Republican opponent in 2008.
U.S. Rep. Tom Cotton, R-Dardanelle, filed for the office Monday, the first day of the week-long filing period.
National political pundits see the U.S. Senate race as vital for Republicans seeking to take back the majority in the Senate. Cotton and Pryor each reported raising more than $1 million for their campaigns during the fourth quarter of 2013.
Cotton reported raising $1.24 million and Pryor reported raising $1.1 million, according to campaign filing reports.
Friday was the fifth day of the filing period, which runs until noon Monday. Some 387 candidates have filed, including 35 Friday, for 265 federal, state, district and nonpartisan judicial positions up for election this year. The primary election is May 20 and the general election is Nov. 4.
Also Friday, Heber Springs Mayor Jackie McPherson, a Democrat, filed for the 1st District Congressional seat now held by U.S. Rep. Rick Crawford, R-Jonesboro. Crawford filed for re-election earlier this week, and Libertarian Brian Scott Willhite of Cabot filed for the office earlier as well.
In the governor’s race, Lynette “Doc” Bryant of Little Rock filed as a Democrat. Former U.S. Congressman and state legislator Mike Ross, a Democrat, filed for governor earlier this week, as did Republican Asa Hutchinson, a former congressman and undersecretary of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.
Also Friday, a number of Libertarian Party candidates filed to run in a variety of state and federal races.
Frank Gilbert, constable of DeKalb Township in Grant County and former mayor of Tull, filed for governor; Ken Hamilton of El Dorado filed for 4th District Congress; Carl Hayes of Little Rock filed for state treasurer; and Aaron Scott Cash of Springdale filed for attorney general.