Will he hop into a tough race?
Will Rep. Joaquin Castro toss his hat into the upcoming Texas Senate race? Castro first said in February he’d make his announcement in eight weeks, then said he’d it would be the end of April, only to recently move his self-imposed deadline to “a few more weeks” reports the Texas Tribune.
Should Castro jump in, he’d first have to beat fellow Democratic Congressman, Beto O’Rourke, who declared his candidacy at the end of March, before squaring off against Sen. Ted Cruz.
Castro may have more to lose this go-round than would be worth sacrificing. The Texas Tribune explained:
“I don’t know if he should do it,” the man said, alluding to what would be an uphill battle against U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas. “He’s got a good thing going.”
It’s the question hanging over the San Antonio Democrat as he nears an announcement on his plans for 2018: Is it worth giving up his seat in Congress, where he has had a steadily growing profile, for a long-shot challenge of Cruz, particularly when another Democrat, U.S. Rep. Beto O’Rourke of El Paso, is already running?
“At the end of the day, it’s all about what’s in his gut,” said Julián Castro, Joaquin Castro’s twin brother and the former U.S. housing secretary. “Is this something where he can best serve the people of Texas and his constituents, and that’s not an easy decision because he’s done a lot of great work in Congress and he has significant committee assignments that allow him to serve his constituents and the American people well.”
Neither O’Rourke nor Castro has garnered support from Texas’ major Democratic donors, who are likely waiting in the wings to see how the Democratic primary shakes out.
A recent poll conducted by the Texas Lyceum showed Castro beating Cruz 35% to 31% and Cruz and O’Rourke tied at 30%.
While Castro weighs his options, O’Rourke is busy holding campaign events all over the Lone Star State, and Cruz’s camp is taunting the opposition:
“Like sand through an hourglass, so are the numbered days before Mr. Castro publicly admits that he will never run for anything more than a safe seat in Congress,” said Jeff Roe, a senior adviser to Cruz. “He was out-maneuvered by the mighty Irishman O’Rourke.”
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