A much-anticipated debate is pitting Texas Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst against the fellow Republican now favored to unseat him, Dan Patrick.
The pair will square off Friday night in a one-hour televised, radio broadcast and online-streamed debate in Houston.
Dewhurst, who hails from Houston, has been in office since 2003 but lost by 13 percentage points to Patrick during March's GOP primary.
Patrick, who's a tea party favorite also from Houston, is now considered the front-runner in the May 27 lieutenant governor runoff. Dewhurst came out of the primary trailing and he's under the most pressure to make up ground.
The race has become increasingly nasty, with negative ads and sniping between both campaigns.
The winner faces Democratic state Sen. Leticia Van de Putte of San Antonio.