Beto O’Rourke announces 2020 presidential run


Nicole Revilla, Co-Editor-in-Chief

Former El Paso Congressman and Democratic Texas Senate candidate Beto O’Rourke announced his intentions to run for president in 2020 on Thursday March 20.

O’Rourke announced his campaign through a video posted on his social media platforms in which he appears with his wife, El Paso native Amy Sanders O’Rourke.

“Amy and I are happy to share with you that I’m running to serve you as the next president of the United States of America,” O’Rourke said in his video announcement.

O’Rourke and his wife Amy

“This is a defining moment of truth for this country and for every single one of us.” O’Rourke said.

In the video O’Rourke announces he would embark on a travel to Iowa and many other states on the east coast before returning to his hometown of El Paso, Texas in order to host a kickoff rally on March 30.

O’Rourke became popular nationwide last year when he challenged Senator Ted Cruz for a spot in the US Senate for Texas.

His grassroots campaign contended on O’Rourke personally visiting all 254 counties of Texas and broke Senate campaign fundraising records while building an army of small-dollar donors and eschewing money from political action committees, according to POLITICO.

O’Rourke will take on a similar approach to his presidential campaign; he has visited Iowa, Wisconsin, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, New Hampshire, South Carolina, and Nevada where he personally hosted town halls and met with voters.

O’Rourke has expressed a political platform focused on fighting climate change and improving immigration reform.

He has said that he doesn’t view the incoming immigrants arriving at the Southern border as a problem but that climate change would lead to a “crisis of a different magnitude altogether.”

During his kickoff road trip, O’Rourke has praised the ambitious Green New Deal while answering questions from crowds and to end the federal prohibition on marijuana.

According to CNN, O’Rourke also answered questions about what sets him apart from the Democratic field of presidential candidates, who he said he will not criticize.

O’Rourke pointed to his life in a border community — Ciudad Juárez, Mexico, is visible from his porch — and the attention Trump has directed to the border.

“I have a profoundly positive story to tell that as a nation of immigrants, we should remind ourselves that our success, our strength and yes, our safety and security, depend on the fact that we are a city of immigrants in El Paso, a nation of immigrants across this country,” he said.

When questions on whether him losing the Senate race in Texas last November would affect his ability to win a presidential campaign, O’Rourke said his loss in the Texas Senate race helped Democrats shift the state into competitive territory for the 2020 presidential election.

“I think I was able to show by going to every single county that we will leave no one behind, that no one will be forgotten, that every single one of us as an American and as a human being is important, and we will pay the respect necessary to show that and ensure that,” he said.

According to the Texas Tribune, on March 25, O’Rourke announced that he had hired Jennifer O’Malley Dillon as his campaign manager.

O’Malley Dillon was deputy campaign manager for former President Barack Obama’s 2012 re-election bid. Before that, she served as executive director of the Democratic National Committee.

O’Rourke’s campaign has made him stand out as a democratic candidate, his approval rating has gone up since beginning his run and he is now closely behind Bernie Sanders and Joe Biden.