You have /5 articles left.
Sign up for a free account or log in.

Texas Democrats are attempting to recruit Michael Sorrell, the president of Paul Quinn College, to run a long-shot campaign against incumbent Governor Greg Abbott next year.

Sorrell, 50, has a history of working on underdog campaigns, including the 2008 campaign that elected President Barack Obama, according to a column in The Dallas Morning News. He has previously been pitched as a potential candidate for Dallas County judge and Dallas mayor.

Nonetheless, a college president attempting to run for governor would be an unusual move, especially given the steep odds a challenger faces attempting to unseat the incumbent Republican. At least 850,000 new voters would be needed for Democrats to have a shot at winning a statewide race, according to some projections. A challenger would need as much as $60 million to compete with Abbott’s resources.

Sorrell has been president of Paul Quinn College, a faith-based historically black college in Dallas, since 2007. He’s credited with improving the college’s facilities and curriculum, as well as turning its football field into an urban farm. The college has about 430 students and bills itself as the country’s only urban work college.