Beto O'Rourke will seek 2020 Democratic presidential nomination

Beto O'Rourke

Beto O'Rourke

Just hours after announcing he would enter the Democratic presidential race Thursday, former congressman Beto O'Rourke arrived in Iowa to hold an informal town hall meeting. While O'Rourke did not become a household name prior to his bid last year to unseat Cruz, the 46-year-old has generated excitement among high-profile Democrats who view him as the party's best shot against Trump.

Throughout that race, O'Rourke had insisted he would not run for president - but that stance shifted after he lost.

The more important question might be why he thinks he could-or even should-win the presidency when he hasn't made it clear what he has to offer that the already over-stuffed 2020 Democratic challengers don't. "I want to be in it. Man, I was just born to be in it". "I don't see how we're able to meet any of the fundamental challenges that we have as a country without, in part, harnessing the power of the market", O'Rourke said. He took a solo road trip through the Southwest earlier this year, documenting his travels in a series of Medium posts reminiscent of Jack Kerouac.

O'Rourke also began to lay out what he saw as his top priorities on the eve of his entrance into the 2020 race.

Little touched upon during his hyped Senate run, but may prove a liability in the Democratic primary, is O'Rourke's mixed voting record.

Trademark, black-and-white "Beto for Senate" yard signs became staples in places like NY and Los Angeles - with some supporters now converting them to read "Beto for President 2020".

An appearance with Oprah and a February showdown in El Paso with President Donald Trump only added to the discussion. I think she is a very effective campaigner.

O'Rourke 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". A recent Public Policy Polling survey gave O'Rourke 47 percent to Trump's 41 percent.

Refraining from referring to his "Beto" nickname, Cotton took O'Rourke to task for telling MSNBC last month that he would "absolutely" tear down the border wall separating his hometown from Mexico.

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