Beto O’Rourke, the former Texas Congressman whose failed bid for the U.S. Senate in 2018 earned him national attention and an enthusiastic and loyal following, has announced that he is running for president in 2020.
As ABC News reports, Beto, who for months has been rumored to possibly be a contender for the Democratic Party’s nomination in 2020, made it official on Thursday morning. Not unlike former Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper, O’Rourke announced his candidacy via an online video, which you can see below in this article.
“This is a defining moment of truth for this country and for every single one of us. The challenges that we face right now; the interconnected crises in our economy, our democracy and our climate have never been greater.”
In his video, O’Rourke touches upon a handful of issues that make up parts of his platform – issues, which, by and large, echo those already being touted by Democrats in Congress and by those who have announced their candidacies. Those include, among others, health care reform and climate change.
He also touched on the one issue that, as a Texan, hits close to home for him: immigration. Specifically, he painted immigration in a positive light.
“All of us, wherever you live, can acknowledge that if immigration is a problem, it’s the best possible problem for this country to have, and we should ensure that there are lawful paths to work, to be with family, and to flee persecution.”
I am running to serve you as the next president. The challenges we face are the greatest in living memory. No one person can meet them on their own. Only this country can do that, and only if we build a movement that includes all of us. Say you're in: https://t.co/EKLdkVET2u pic.twitter.com/lainXyvG2n— Beto O'Rourke (@BetoORourke) March 14, 2019
With his announcement, O’Rourke becomes the latest to join an ever-expanding list of Democrats who are running for president in 2020, which as of this writing is over a dozen, according to CNN.
Among those Democrats, Beto is a long shot, says Slate writer Josh Voorhees. He notes that O’Rourke has plenty of powerful weapons in his arsenal, including a fervent loyal support base, generous donors, and most importantly, likeability. But what he lacks is a clear and consistent message.
It’s a criticism echoed by CNBC’s Christina Wilkie. She notes that O’Rourke’s approach to policy is “wait and see,” and that Beto himself even admitted that he believes rigid adherence to policy is a bug, not a feature.
Meanwhile, Democrats and their supporters are waiting for former Vice President Joe Biden to announce, once and for all, whether or not he is going to run. He has been teasing a run for months, as reported by The Inquisitr, and if and when he does announce his candidacy, he would immediately be the frontrunner from the get-go, making Beto’s candidacy, and the candidacies of all other announced Democrats, all but irrelevant.