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Democratic rising star Beto O’Rourke launches 2020 White House run

Democratic rising star Beto O’Rourke launches 2020 White House run

AFP
Washington
Beto O’Rourke, a skateboarding former punk rocker feted as one of the Democratic Party’s rising stars, announced on Thursday he is running for president -- joining a crowded field of candidates vying to challenge US President Donald Trump in 2020.
“The only way for us to live up to the promise of America is to give it our all and to give it for all of us,” O’Rourke, 46, said in a video, filmed alongside his wife in their El Paso, Texas home.
O’Rourke has been discussed as a potential frontrunner since dazzling the grassroots during an unexpectedly tight race last year to unseat Texas Republican Senator Ted Cruz, his charismatic performances and inclusive message turning heads in Washington.
Early on Thursday, he was already taking questions from voters in Keokuk, Iowa -- following in the footsteps of other Democrats keen to raise their profiles in the state that will vote before any other in the 2020 primary process.
“I think he’s got a lot of hand movement,” Trump quipped in the Oval Office, declining to say whether he thought O’Rourke would be the strongest Democratic opponent against him.
He has vowed to run a positive campaign that would seek to “bring out the very best from every single one of us” and unite a country riven by political, social and cultural fissures.
“Man, I’m just born to be in it, and want to do everything I humanly can for this country at this moment,” he told Vanity Fair.
Published online hours before his official announcement, it features a spread by celebrity photographer Annie Leibovitz with images of O’Rourke at home with family relaxing, making pancakes, playing music and posing against the desolate Texan landscape.

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