Is Beto the one to Beat?

Beto O’Rourke who almost beat Ted Cruz in Texas, say it again with the emphasis on Texas which hasn’t had a Democratic Party senator since June 13, 1998, could be the contender to beat in the primaries and a formidable foe to run against Donald Trump.

In an ideal color and gender blind world where one’s age isn’t held against them and being less than charismatic is irrelevant, the Democrats have excellent candidates to choose from.  However Beto is white, male, young, handsome, and charismatic. He could lure back those rust belt voters who went for Trump. Beto might swing some of the traditional red states to blue with voters who aren’t hardcore bigots to vote for a Democrat who they see as bringing a breath of clean fresh air to the White House.

Beto is now candidly admitting he is assessing the pros and cons of running for president. He’s hardly a dark horse anymore. As I look at the potential candidates I wonder if he’d be the one Trump fears more than any other. What is he going to attack him for? Having a DUI arrest in his youth of smoke weed with Willie?

Outside of his home state, he was only a little less known nationally as Barack Obama was before he gave the 2004 Democratic National Convention keynote address. In losing such a close race he has assured he can, if he chooses, to continue to be in the national spotlight. He has two years to position himself as a serious presidential candidate. If there’s a bruising primary fight, he could end up as the compromise candidate.

Instead of boring you with why I think Beto O’Rouke has a lot going for him should he run for president against Trump, not the least of which is that he is a relative unknown, first check out his Wikipedia page.

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Most of you probably know he was in a punk rock band and had some minor run-ins with the law, but how many of you even knew he was he was elected to the United States House of Representatives in 2012 where he served out of the glare of the spotlight because of his membership on two somewhat low profile committees, Armed Services, and Veterans Affairs.

Now that you’ve read his Wikipedia page (you have read it of course) take a look at these photos (and read the articles) and ask yourself whether you can see the politician Town and Country calls Kennedyesque as an effective, even a formidable, candidate.

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Why So Many People Are Betting on Beto O’Rourke? He’s a Kennedyesque longshot in a roiling red state, but the Democrat from Texas just might have a chance at unseating Ted Cruz. Town and Country 

John F. Kennedy played touch football, Bill Clinton played the sax, Barack O’Bama shot hoops. Beto would be our first punk-rocker president. He’s also a runner. 

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If This Punk-Rock Democrat Can (almost) Win in Texas, Maybe We’re Not Totally Screwed

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What It Was Like to Be In a Punk Band With Beto O’Rourke, According to Cedric Bixler-Zavala

While on the subject of music. Donald Trump has Kanye West. Look who Beto has:

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Ted Cruz bought ads on Stephen Colbert the evening Beto was on. In an anti-Beto ad, Cruz posted a mug shot from when Beto was arrested for DWI which backfired when social media responded by asking why Ted Cruz thought he benefited from posting a photo a guy who looked cool as shit.

If you watched the Colbert interview and think that the 47-year-old Beto seems too young to be elected president, you may recall the John F. Kennedy campaign speech when he made a joke about his own youth. JFK, at 43, was our second youngest president after Teddy Roosevelt who was 42 when elected. Of course, Obama was 47 when he was elected.

If so, take a look at his Twitter feed.

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Addendum:

Satirical quote from The Onion from Cruz’s 10-year-old daughter Caroline: “Mr. O’Rourke, could you be our new daddy—please, please, please, with a cherry on top? You’d be a nice, normal daddy, not weird and creepy like the one we have now. We could even introduce you to our friends without being embarrassed. We love you, Beto!”

I posted a version of this story on Daily Kos before the election. The 63 comments are interesting

Update: From The Hill: Obama World lovefest for O’Rourke is growing

Obama himself has commented on O’Rourke’s potential candidacy.

“Impressive young man who ran a terrific race,” Obama told David Axelrod, the chief strategist of his 2008 campaign, during a taping of “The Axe Files,” which airs on CNN. 

“What I liked most about his race was that it didn’t feel constantly poll-tested,” Obama said. “It felt as if he based his statements and his positions on what he believed. And that, you’d like to think, is normally how things work. Sadly, it’s not.” 

Obama stopped well short of an endorsement ahead of a Democratic presidential primary that could include former Vice President Joe Biden. “We’ve got a number of people who fall into that same category,” he added.  

 

Trump embraces Cruz, ramps up immigration rhetoric

President Donald Trump campaigns for Sen. Ted Cruz in Houston. (AP Photos/Eric Gay)

President Donald Trump escalated his immigration rhetoric at a midterm rally in Texas on Monday, falsely accusing Democrats of “encouraging millions of illegal aliens to break our laws, violate our borders and overwhelm our nation.”

With weeks to go before Election Day, Trump is seeking to drive Republican turnout with his hard-line immigration policies. He cast the November choice in stark terms before the Houston rally for Republican Sen. Ted Cruz, saying Democrats “have launched an assault on the sovereignty of our country.”

Trump spoke before a massive crowd on behalf of his former foe, who faces a strong challenge from Democratic Rep. Beto O’Rourke. When the two competed in the 2016 Republican presidential primary, Trump would frequently deride his rival as “Lyin’ Ted” but said in Texas that their relationship had come a long way.

“Nobody has helped me more with your tax cut, with your regulation,” Trump said, also attacking O’Rourke, as a “stone-cold phony.”

With the midterms drawing near, Trump has emphasized immigration, targeting a migrant caravan heading to the U.S. southern border. The president’s focus on immigration politics comes as he seeks to counter Democratic enthusiasm in November. Trump believes that his campaign pledges, including his much vaunted — and still-unfulfilled — promise to quickly build a U.S.-Mexico border wall, are still rallying cries.

Trump is betting that his latest focus will further erode the enthusiasm gap that began to close during the debate over Brett Kavanaugh, Trump’s nominee for the Supreme Court. But the approach offers both risks and rewards.

The hard-line rhetoric may be popular among the red-state rural Republicans who will play an outsized role in the top Senate contests. But it may further alienate the moderate Republicans and women in the overwhelmingly suburban races that will decide the House majority — including several in Texas, California and Florida that feature large Hispanic populations.

On Monday night, Trump called the caravan an “assault on our country” and suggested, without citing evidence, that “Democrats had something to do with it.” He added: “We need a wall built fast.”

Earlier Monday, Trump said the U.S. will begin “cutting off, or substantially reducing” aid to three Central American nations because of the caravan.

In Texas, an enthusiastic crowd packed into Houston’s Toyota Center, wearing red Make America Great Again hats and waving signs, including some with the president’s new catchphrase, “Jobs vs. Mobs.”

Speaking before Trump took the stage, Cruz made clear that their conflict was behind them and that the two were working together. His biggest applause came when he predicted that “in 2020, Donald Trump will be overwhelmingly re-elected.”

A series of elected state officials were among the warmup speakers, as well as Trump’s daughter-in-law Lara Trump and son Eric Trump, who told the audience that “we are driving the Democrats absolutely nuts.”

Trump gleefully used his latest attack line against Democrats, saying, “Democrats produce mobs, Republicans produce jobs.” He declared Democrats would be a “big risk to the American family,” and went after some of his favorite targets, including Democratic House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, California Rep. Maxine Waters, New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker and Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren.

The president stressed tax cuts, the strong economy and the hurricane response in the state. He repeated his pledge for a new middle-income tax cut of about 10 percent, though he offered few details on the plan. Trump said they would be “putting it in” next week, though Congress is not in session.

Trump also criticized so-called globalists, declaring, “You know what I am? I’m a nationalist.”

Trump’s Texas stop is part of a campaign blitz that is expected to last until Election Day.

Although political relationships tend to be fluid, Trump’s appearance for Cruz is notable, given that the two were bitter enemies during the 2016 primaries. After Trump insulted Cruz’s wife and father, and Cruz refused to endorse Trump at the Republican National Convention, it was far from clear that the two would ever put it all behind them.

But they started rebuilding in the closing days of the campaign and have worked together since Trump took the White House.

The White House views Cruz as a loyal vote for his agenda. Trump promised he would come to Texas after the Senate race grew closer than expected, with O’Rourke out-fundraising Cruz and drawing large and enthusiastic crowds around the state. Cruz, who is leading O’Rourke in the polls, said over the summer that he would welcome Trump’s support, though he has brushed off any suggestion he’d need Trump to win.

During the 2016 Republican primary, Trump assailed Cruz as a liar and “dishonest politician,” insulted his wife’s appearance and promoted unsubstantiated claims that Cruz’s father had links to President John F. Kennedy’s assassin, Lee Harvey Oswald.

Trump on Monday did not voice any second thoughts about labeling Cruz the son of a presidential killer, telling reporters, “I don’t regret anything.”

Cruz gave back as good as he got in 2016. He savaged Trump as a “pathological liar,” an “amoral bully” and a “sniveling coward.” After Cruz lost the primary, he gave a speech at the Republican National Convention in which he did not endorse Trump and instead called on Republicans to “vote your conscience,” drawing boos from the crowd. But he announced his support about a month before Election Day — and won points in Trump’s camp for not withdrawing after the “Access Hollywood” tape was released in which Trump bragged about groping women.

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Associated Press writer Steve Peoples in New York contributed to this report.

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Copyright © 2018 Capitol Hill Blue

Copyright © 2018 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved

Is Beto O’Rourke the next Barack Obama?

If Beto O’Rourke beats Ted Cruz in Texas, let me say it again with the emphasis on Texas  which hasn’t had a Democratic Party United States senator since June 13, 1998,* could he be a potential candidate to run for president against Trump? In fact, could he be the darkhorse candidate Trump fears more than any other?

Outside of his home state, he is only a little less known nationally as Barack Obama was before he gave the 2004 Democratic National Convention keynote address. If he wins he will be in the national spotlight and has two years to position himself as a serious presidential candidate. If there’s a bruising primary fight, he could end up as the compromise candidate.

Instead of boring you with why I think Beto O’Rouke has a lot going for him should he run for president against Trump, not the least of which is that he is a relative unknown, first check out his Wikipedia page.

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Most of you probably know he was in a punk rock band and had some minor run-ins with the law, but how many of you even knew he was he was elected to the United States House of Representatives in 2012 where he still serves out of the glare of the spotlight because of his membership on two somewhat low profile committees, Armed Services, and Veterans Affairs.

Now that you’ve read his Wikipedia page (you have read it of course) take a look at these photos (and read the articles) and ask yourself whether you can see the politician Town and Country calls Kennedyesque as an effective, even a formidable, candidate.

kos-101218b.png

Why So Many People Are Betting on Beto O’Rourke? He’s a Kennedyesque longshot in a roiling red state, but the Democrat from Texas just might have a chance at unseating Ted Cruz. Town and Country 

John F. Kennedy played touch football, Bill Clinton played the sax, Barack O’Bama shot hoops. Beto would be our first punk-rocker president. He’s also a runner. 

kos-101218-beto-jogging.png
kos-101218-c.png

If This Punk-Rock Democrat Can Win in Texas, Maybe We’re Not Totally Screwed

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What It Was Like to Be In a Punk Band With Beto O’Rourke, According to Cedric Bixler-Zavala

While on the subject of music. Donald Trump has Kanye West. Look who Beto has:

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Ted Cruz bought ads on Stephen Colbert the evening Beto was on. In an anti-Beto ad, Cruz posted a mug shot from when Beto was arrested for DWI which backfired when social media responded by asking why Ted Cruz thought he benefited from posting a photo a guy who looked cool as shit.

If you watched the Colbert interview and think that the 47-year-old Beto seems too young to be elected president, take a look at this John F. Kennedy campaign speech when he made a joke about his own youth. JFK, at 43, was our second youngest president after Teddy Roosevelt who was 42 when elected. Of course, Obama was 47 when he was elected.

Have I piqued your interest? If so, take a look at his Twitter feed.

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* Footnote:

Lloyd Bentsen was the last elected US Senator from Texas. He served from 1971-1993. He resigned to become US Secretary of Treasury and was replaced by Bob Krueger who lost the special election to fill Benston’s term to Republican Kay Bailey HutchisonAnn Richards served from 1991 —  1995 as the last Democratic governor from Texas.

Addendum:

Satirical quote from The Onion from Cruz’s 10-year-old daughter Caroline: “Mr. O’Rourke, could you be our new daddy—please, please, please, with a cherry on top? You’d be a nice, normal daddy, not weird and creepy like the one we have now. We could even introduce you to our friends without being embarrassed. We love you, Beto!”