Published: Fri, March 15, 2019
Global News | By Blake Casey

Beto's Running :: Politics :: News :: Beto O'Rourke

Beto's Running :: Politics :: News :: Beto O'Rourke

Beto O'Rourke launched a run on Thursday for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination, hoping his message and the fame gained from his unsuccessful election challenge against U.S. Senator Ted Cruz in Texas a year ago set him apart from a diverse field.

O'Rourke joins a widening field of Democrats who have announced exploratory committees including Cory Booker, Jay Inslee, Pete Buttigieg, Julian Castro, former U.S. Rep John Delaney, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, Senator Bernie Sanders, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, John Hickenlooper, Senator Kamala Harris, Senator Elizabeth Warren, Bill Weld, Marianne Williamson, and entrepreneur Andrew Yang.

Trump told reporters Thursday in the Oval Office that O'Rourke, who just announced that he's running for president, uses his hands so much that it might indicate he's "crazy".

He already had planned a visit to Iowa this weekend.

When the Des Moines Register/CNN/Mediacom poll was first run in December, O'Rourke placed third, the top choice of 11 percent.

Mr O'Rourke has represented Texas' 16 congressional district for three terms in the US House of Representatives.

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O'Rourke, whose given name is Robert Francis, as a child acquired his nickname "Beto", a common shortening of "Roberto" for Spanish speakers. He outlined challenges facing the United States, from immigration to climate change, saying, "The foundational challenge to get all of this done, is to fix our democracy".

"Middle schools are one of the fastest-growing markets for marijuana sales today", O'Rourke said Thursday at a campaign event in Iowa.

With his presidential effort, O'Rourke is hoping to leverage the fame he gained with his Senate race.

A former bassist in a punk band, O'Rourke's 1998 arrest for driving while intoxicated has been an issue in every campaign he has run and will undoubtedly resurface during his presidential bid.

"This moment of peril produces, perhaps, the greatest moment of promise for this country", he said in the video which was posted on the El Paso Times website.

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