Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) and former Houston Mayor Bill White (D) will face off in the Texas gubernatorial race, putting an end to speculation that Texas would be a heated contest between Republicans and tea partiers in 2010.

The Republican primary had been counted on, as races shaped up for 2010 last year, as a hotspot for potential GOP infighting--turns out, it wasn't.

Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R) had challenged the conservative Perry (who resisted stimulus money, at first, and made a veiled overture about secession as a response to the federal government's involvement), but her campaign failed to gain traction. Last night, she conceded the race to Perry; with a third of precincts reporting, Hutchison trailed Perry 52% to 31%.

Nor would Texas be a forum for tea party attendance: the third Republican primary candidate, who gathered some national attention as the primary approached, was in a distant third at 17% as Hutchison conceded.

So the GOP escapes a close outcome, and the tea partiers will have to find another race in which their movement can rise.

Thumbnail image credit: Taylor Jones/Getty Images

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to letters@theatlantic.com.