(CNN) - Houston, Texas, Mayor Bill White said Monday he will announce within a week after the Thanksgiving holiday whether he will run for governor.
"I agree to consider running for that office, and will make a decision by Friday, December 4," the Democrat told reporters in Austin, the state capital.
He invited Texans to weigh in on the question by e-mailing him at firstname.lastname@example.org. "I think it's best that I listen to people and then make a decision and move on from there," he said.
White's announcement came shortly after candidate Tom Schieffer said he is dropping out of the race for the Democratic nomination and urged that White seek the job instead. Schieffer and his campaign co-chairman, Lyndon Olson, met Sunday with White, the Austin American reported Monday.
The statehouse currently is held by Republican Gov. Rick Perry.
White had been campaigning to fill the Senate seat expected to be vacated by Kay Bailey Hutchison, a Republican who is planning to challenge Perry, but she announced last week that she would postpone her resignation.
"Both our next governor and our next senator," White said, "should bring new leadership to the task of moving our state forward, both in Austin and in Washington. There's too much politics and too little leadership with real solutions."
He cited Texas as being last in the nation in percentage of students who graduate from high school and said soaring electricity costs, insurance rates and college tuition costs "have created a barrier for many people who just wanted to have a better life."
White singled out Perry for criticism. "Many of us are disappointed with his performance, and I think it's time we had new leadership in Austin," he said.
Referring to a Texas Monthly article that described him as having ears that are one size too big for his head, White said, "Maybe I'm not the most media-genic candidate, but right now I think people want folks who are confident, shoot straight, don't engage in cronyism and get things done."
The Texas governor's mansion has been occupied by Republicans since 1995, when George W. Bush entered office after besting Ann Richards.