Beto O’Rourke

Beto O’Rourke Enters The Presidential Race: Is He The New Hope For The Democrats In 2020?

Former three term El Paso, Texas Congressman Robert Francis “Beto” O’Rourke is the newest entry into the Democratic Presidential race, and is exciting many young voters and others tired of the “establishment” veterans.

O’Rourke is 46, has three children 8, 10, and 12, and his wife Amy Hoover Sanders is 37. If he won the Presidency, it would bring a young family into the White House.

O’Rourke is seen as a moderate centrist, in the line of Joe Biden, but a full 30 years younger.

He came within about two and a half points of Republican Senator Ted Cruz in the Midterm Elections of 2018.

He shares the same first and middle name of Robert Francis Kennedy, the brother of John F. Kennedy, and himself the Attorney General and New York Senator who sought the Democratic Presidential nomination in 1968 before being assassinated on June 6, 1968. And he looks as if he a spitting image of a younger Robert Kennedy but much taller than RFK, although not related to him.

It is an oddity that his wife has the first name of Democratic Presidential rival Amy Klobuchar; a middle name the same as President Herbert Hoover; and a last name the same as Democratic Presidential contender Bernie Sanders. And their older son’s first name is Ulysses, the first name of President Ulysses S. Grant.

O’Rourke has charisma, charm, and personal appeal, and that could just be the right combination for 2020, and opens up the chance that Texas just might go “Blue”, making it easier to win the White House.

There is a long way to go in this Presidential competition, but O’Rourke has made it more exciting, as earlier Barack Obama did in 2008, Jimmy Carter in 1976, Wendell Willkie in 1940, and William Jennings Bryan in 1896.

If Texas Went “Blue” In 2020, The Midwest Would No Longer Be Essential For Democratic Hold On White House

The possibility now exists, after “Beto” O’Rourke ran the best Democratic race for statewide office in Texas by a Democrat in 30 years, when he came close to defeating Republican Senator Ted Cruz in November 2018, that the state might turn “Blue” in the near future.

If O’Rourke or former San Antonio Mayor and Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Julian Castro ends up running as the Presidential or even Vice Presidential nominee in 2020 for the Democrats, the party might win the 38 electoral votes of Texas, replacing the need for the Midwest states that Hillary Clinton lost to be won if the Democrats are to gain the White House.

And if Joaquin Castro, Julian’s identical twin brother, now a Congressman from San Antonio, runs against Texas Republican Senator John Cornyn, and is able to win the state, it will be ever more insurance on the short term and long term future of Texas in the Democratic camp.

Joe Biden Moves To The Forefront As Michael Bloomberg And Sherrod Brown Decide Not To Run For President

With moderates Michael Bloomberg and Sherrod Brown deciding not to run for President in 2020, Joe Biden moves to the forefront as the best moderate centrist Democratic Presidential candidate, at least on paper in and polls.

We also have Senator Amy Klobuchar, former San Antonio Mayor and Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Julian Castro, former El Paso Congressman Robert Francis “Beto” O’Rourke, plus possibly John Hickenlooper, former Colorado Governor, who has just announced for President as possible moderates who might compete.

With Klobuchar apparently the only candidate from the Midwest “battleground” states that Hillary Clinton lost, and Castro and O’Rourke from Texas, which could conceivably go “Blue” and make it unnecessary for a Democrat to win the Midwest, and Hickenlooper from a critical Rocky Mountain West state, any of them could be the person to replace Joe Biden, if he falters, and any of them could also be the Vice Presidential running mage with Joe Biden.

At this point, these five listed above are probably those with an edge to win the nation, rather than further left nominees, but it is clear that the race is wide open, and all candidates will have to be vetted, and many will fall short, and none will be perfect in their backgrounds and records in office.

A Joe Biden-Beto O’Rourke Ticket Might Be The Trick For The Democrats

One of the scenarios that is being discussed, regarding the Democratic Party and the Presidential Election of 2020, is that former Vice President Joe Biden and former Texas Congressman Beto O’Rourke might be the ticket to victory.

Biden remains in the lead in many public opinion polls, and has long been admired and loved by many Americans, including this blogger. Of course, in a career of 44 years in government, some of his initiatives, including a tough crime bill, making it more difficult to declare bankruptcy, and his conduct of the Clarence Thomas-Anita Hill Supreme Court hearings, undermine his appeal to many. Also, his tendency to talk too much, and in an embarrassing manner, also is not appealing to many.

On the other hand, his 36 years in the Senate, including chairmanship of the Senate Judiciary Committee and Senate Foreign Relations Committee has made highly respected by many legal authorities and foreign policy specialists, as well as the leadership of many foreign nations.

Beto O’Rourke ran a very close race in Texas against Senator Ted Cruz, and has a very appealing personality, and has the added edge of looking as if he is related to the former Attorney General and US Senator Robert F. Kennedy, with whom he shares the same first and middle name. Even though he is not a Kennedy, he reminds many of the former Presidential contender who was assassinated in 1968.

However, O’Rourke has some youthful arrests that could dog him, and is seen by many as too moderate a Democrat, although one must realize he is from El Paso, Texas, not exactly a site of overly progressive heritage. Many might say he is a “Blue Dog” Democrat in his six years career in the House of Representatives, now ended.

So for Progressives who like Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, Joe Biden and Beto O’Rourke seem too moderate and centrist, and it all comes down to whether a Sanders or a Warren could actually carry the nation, and make up for the shortcomings of Hillary Clinton in the Midwest and among white working class voters.

Biden being 78 at the time of the next inauguration is definitely a problem, but O’Rourke would be 48. It all comes down to selection of a running mate who Joe Biden would be compatible with, which in Joe’s case is not a big problem, because he gets along well with most people he has associated with, and has a record of “crossing the aisle” and working with Republicans, many of whom admire and praise him, even if they disagree on the issues.

Early Caucuses And Primaries Favor Different Democratic Presidential Nominees

A year from now, the early Presidential caucuses and primaries create a situation where different candidates may have an edge, and are likely to create more complications in deciding who will gain and who will lose favor.

The Iowa Caucuses might favor Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar or Ohio Senator Sherrod Brown.

The New Hampshire Primary might favor Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders or Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren.

The Nevada Caucuses might favor California Senator Kamala Harris or Colorado Senator Michael Bennet.

The South Carolina Primary might favor either New Jersey Senator Cory Booker or California Senator Kamala Harris, with its heavily African American Democratic membership in that Southern state.

On Super Tuesday, March 3, Harris might be favored in her home state of California; and former San Antonio Mayor and Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Julian Castro or former El Paso Congressman Beto O’Rourke might have the edge in Texas.

As the month of March wears on, with a number of Midwestern primaries in Michigan, Missouri, Ohio and Illinois, Klobuchar and Brown would seem to have the edge, assuming no one has become the obvious Presidential choice after Super Tuesday, as at least seven other primaries are conducted that day.

Of course, based on past elections, it could be that the nominee would be decided simply by the large number of states conducting their primaries on March 3 (at least 9 states, including the giant ones of California and Texas).

The Border Wall Conflict Comes To A Head As Trump And Beto O’Rourke Have Competing Rallies In El Paso, Texas This Evening

Tonight, we will see a classic confrontation on the Border Wall conflict as Donald Trump and potential Democratic Presidential contender Robert Francis “Beto” O’Rourke have competing rallies in El Paso, Texas, on the issue of the Border Wall.

Trump has called El Paso a city of crime, when it has one of the lowest rates of crime over the long haul, even before there was the building of a wall in 2008. The Republican Mayor of El Paso, along with other Republican and Democratic political leaders in the area, have denounced the lies that Trump perpetrates about the effects and the rationale for a wall.

Trump is holding a campaign style rally, and O’Rourke, who gained notice by his close race against Senator Ted Cruz, coming within three points in the deeply Red state of Texas, of defeating him, is to conduct a competing rally at the same time and basic location.

The question will be how large the crowd will be for each rally, and how effective their oratory will be. O’Rourke has been able to gain large rallies during his Senate campaign, and has had the ability to gain large amounts of campaign funds from ordinary citizens, who find him appealing in a way only Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont has been able to before now, in the Democratic Party.

Is this the beginning of a Presidential campaign, and will Beto O’Rourke be the magical figure to overcome Donald Trump?

Also, will there be the potential for violence tonight, hopefully not, but not beyond possibility, on an extremely emotional and divisive issue.

This will be a split screen news event this evening, and could be a major moment in the making of the Presidential Election of 2020.

The Political Knives Are Out For Democratic Presidential Contenders

The Presidential Election is upon us in February 2019, as more Democrats are announcing their candidacies for President.

And as they announce or are about to announce, the political knives are out for them, both by opponents in the party, and Republican and right wing critics, out to undermine all of them by any means possible.

There is no question that Donald Trump operatives are part of the equation, but we also are getting reports on POLITICO, HUFFINGTON POST, BUZZ FEED, and the NEW YORK TIMES and WASHINGTON POST that make it clear that all candidates have flaws, imperfections, and issues that could derail their candidacies.

But of course, Donald Trump has plenty of flaws, imperfections, and issues, well demonstrated since he announced his candidacy in June 2015.

So what are some of the imperfections, shortcomings, flaws of Democratic contenders?

Joe Biden has a tendency to gaffes, stupid statements he makes very often, as he tends to be extremely wordy and gabby as a personality. Also, his handling of the Clarence Thomas-Anita Hill matter in 1991 bedogs him, despite his apologies on that matter. Additionally, he is known as having been the credit card Senator, because of major banks and their credit card operations being centered in Delaware, his home state. This has led to overly high interest rates for customers over the years, and to inability of many people to go bankrupt when they are strapped financially, particularly those who have student loan debt. Additionally, he was a sponsor of tough crime laws in the 1990s, which caused many minority groups in particular to face stiff sentences for drug convictions. And finally as Vice President, he swore in Senators for new terms or first terms, and tended to be “touchy feely” with daughters, wives, and other women in the families of Senators, which could be seen as a problem by the “Me Too” Movement against sexual harassment.

Elizabeth Warren has identified herself as a native American, and it has become an albatross around her neck, leading to her apologizing, but it remains an issue which Donald Trump has, and will continue to exploit. Additionally, many people think she is too shrill, but this is a double standard, as many male politicians, including Donald Trump, Chris Christie Newt Gingrich, and Rudy Giuliani are shrill as well.

Amy Klobuchar has now been revealed as a nightmare for her staff to work for, very temperamental, cruel, abusive, demanding, which is totally against her public persona, but a list of Senators tough to work for in the same manner, shows seven out of the top ten are women. So what does one make of this, truly something to shake one’s head over.

Tulsi Gabbard is criticized for her meeting with Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad, who has committed mass murder during the eight year long Syrian Civil War.

“Beto” O’Rourke has the record of several arrests when a college student, for minor burglaries and break ins, seemingly fueled by alcohol.

Kamala Harris is criticized for opposing the death penalty for a cop killer in California, and generally, for being opposed to capital punishment.

Many progressives are unhappy with Sherrod Brown, for being against a one step movement toward Medicare For All, suggesting a slower approach in that direction.

Bernie Sanders is criticized as too far left with his “socialist” views, thought by many to be the road to defeat, particularly with Donald Trump attacking Socialism, which he sees as the Democratic Party direction.

Kirsten Gillibrand is criticized for having “bullied” Minnesota Senator Al Franken to resign over accusations of sexual harassment. Also, her overly conservative record in the House of Representatives before becoming Senator is used against her.

Cory Booker is criticized for being too tied to Wall Street and Pharmaceutical companies, and some wonder if his revelation of a dating relationship with an actress is trying to hide his single status, which has led to rumors about his sexuality.

It is clear one has to have a thick skin to participate in the Presidential race, and it does make one wonder how anyone can survive such scrutiny and remain sane and balanced.

So, sadly, the desire for perfection in a candidate or nominee is gone, and we have to pick an imperfect person to run against Donald Trump, but with the understanding that no matter what the imperfections, Donald Trump is the worst President in American history in his character, his morality, his ethics, his utterances, and his actions.

The Rise Of “Political Stars” Who Lose Elections

Suddenly, in 2019, we have the rise of “political stars” who lose elections, but are considered future leaders.

So we have “Beto” O’Rourke, former El Paso, Texas Congressman, who ran a close race against Texas Senator Ted Cruz, and is now considered a potential Democratic Presidential candidate.

We also have Stacey Abrams, African American nominee for Governor in Georgia, who will be giving the State of the Union Democratic response tonight after Donald Trump’s State of the Union address to Congress.

And we have Andrew Gillum, African American nominee for Governor in Florida, who is seen as a rising star in the party, and might be a national leader in the long term future.

Of course, others have lost races for office, and gone on to be national stars, such as Abraham Lincoln, Franklin D. Roosevelt, and George W. Bush. Lincoln and Bush lost Senate races after serving in Congress, and then went on to be President. FDR lost the Vice Presidency in 1920, and then, twelve years later, was elected President.

The Best 14 Potential Democratic Presidential Candidates For 2020

As one looks ahead to 2020, this author and blogger wishes to indicate who he considers to be the 14 best potential Democratic Presidential candidates for 2020.

There are an estimated 30 or more potential candidates who might announce for President, but many of them seem wanting in many respects, and as stated by this author yesterday, having more than about a dozen would be counterproductive.

Of course, individual politicians who wish to run are not going to concern themselves with numbers, but I wish to indicate the list that I feel is the most legitimate, and most likely, that we will see the final few Presidential contenders emerging  as  serious possibilities.

So in no special order, except by geographical sections, here goes:

Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont

Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts

Senator Chris Murphy of Connecticut

Senator Cory Booker of New Jersey

Former Vice President Joe Biden of Delaware

Senator Sherrod Brown of Ohio

Senator Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota

Former San Antonio Mayor and Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Julian Castro of Texas

Former Congressman Robert Francis (Beto) O’Rourke of Texas

Governor Steve Bullock of Montana

Senator Jeff Merkley of Oregon

Senator Kamala Harris of California

Mayor Eric Garcetti of Los Angeles

Congressman Eric Swalwell of California

So the list includes 8 Senators, 2 House members past or present, three Mayors past or present, 1 Governor, and 1 former Vice President of the United State, who served in the Senate for 36 years..

It is an impressive list, heavily weighted toward US Senators, but with some alternatives from elsewhere, and some from farther left and others more toward the moderate center, with the question being what is the best strategy for the Democrats for the Presidential campaign of 2020.

The Aftermath Of The Midterm Elections: A Lot Of Positives, But Also Negatives

Now that the Midterm Elections of 2018 are over, after having time to think about the events that transpired, several conclusions are clear.

There certainly were positives, but also negatives.

The big positives were that the House of Representatives once again fell into the hands of the Democrats, after eight years in the wilderness, and Nancy Pelosi, who was an excellent Speaker from 2007-2011, is likely to become Speaker again, although there is a movement among younger and new members to have someone else as their leader, to be decided in the coming weeks.

Another big positive is the gain of a substantial number of new Governorships, including in the all important Midwest, and having a majority of governorships insures a better future for the Democratic Party when the Census of 2020 occurs, and reapportionment of seats in state legislatures and in the House of Representatives occurs in 2021 and 2022.

A third big positive is that some of the most disgraceful and despicable Republicans lost, including Scott Walker, Kris Kobach, and David Brat.

However, some major negatives stand out, and the most significant is the loss of at least two Senate seats or more, although it is also clear that the Democrats have gained at least one Senate seat in Nevada, and may win in Arizona. However, they have lost North Dakota, Missouri, and Indiana, and likely, Florida,

Also, the most disappointing aspect of the election was in my state of Florida, where it looks like Governor Rick Scott is likely to defeat Senator Bill Nelson, and where right wing extremist Ron DeSantis has defeated Andrew Gillum, who would have been the first African American governor, and had developed quite a following.

Also, it seems as if Stacey Abrams, who would be the first African American female governor in American history, is likely losing the Georgia Governor race to Brian Kemp, another right wing extremist.

And Beto O’Rourke did well, but still lost to Ted Cruz in the Texas Senate race.

So it is a mixed bag in regards to the results of the midterm elections.