Like most races for the presidency of the United States, 2020’s presidential election is shaping up to be an incredibly competitive one with 23 Democrats and 2 Republicans running. President Donald Trump announced his reelection campaign June 18.1 And for the rest of the 2020 presidential candidates, he is the man to beat.
But before they can do that, the extensive roster of Democratic candidates will have to thin out first. Leading up to summer, it seemed like every other day another politician was announcing their presidential run. After the first Democratic primary debates were conducted on June 26 and June 27, the race to the nomination has officially begun.
Of the highly competitive pool of Democratic 2020 presidential candidates, two are Texans. Beto O’Rourke and Julián Castro served in the state’s public office and both are considered strong contenders in the primary race.
After gaining nationwide attention during his 2018 run for Senate where he narrowly lost to Texas’ incumbent Senator Ted Cruz, the 46-year-old former congressman of Texas announced he was running for President in 2020. A cover story on Vanity Fair helped roll out the announcement of his presidential bid with the tagline “I want to be in it. Man, I’m just born to be in it.”2 It quickly became infamous, but O’Rourke’s campaign continues to be a strong one.
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“This is going to be a positive campaign that seeks to bring out the very best from every single one of us, that seeks to unite a very divided country. We saw the power of this in Texas.” – Beto O’Rourke, 2020 Presidential Candidate3
A San Antonio native, Castro served as the city’s mayor before becoming the youngest member of President Obama’s cabinet in 2014 when he was appointed the United States Secretary of Housing and Urban Development. Considered a rising star in the Democratic party, he has not been seen as a frontrunner in this presidential race. That changed during the first 2020 Democratic primary debate where Castro was considered one of the breakout stars.4
“America isn’t just my home and my country — it’s always been a promise for a better life. A promise that every American deserves.” – Julián Castro, 2020 Presidential Canidate5