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Julian Castro To Announce 2020 Presidential Bid Saturday
13 January 2019, 09:58 | Darnell Patrick
Castro would become the most high-profile Democrat to date to officially enter the 2020 race
Julián Castro, the former Housing and Urban Development (HUD) secretary who announced Saturday he is running for president, says President Trump is a "failed leader" on immigration and called for an end of detentions of families seeking asylum at the southern border.
Democratic former USA housing secretary Julian Castro is widely expected to launch a 2020 presidential bid.
"I am a candidate for president of the United States", the 44-year-old Castro told a crowd in San Antonio's historic Guadalupe Plaza, during a speech that frequently invoked the immigrant heritage that brought his family to the USA from Mexico.
"When my grandmother got here nearly 100 years ago", he said, "I am sure she never could have imagined that two generations later, one of her grandsons would be serving as a member of the United States Congress and the other would be standing here with you here today to say these words: I am a candidate for President of the United States of America".
Castro's entrance makes him the only declared Latino in the Democratic field, a relatively powerful position given how the party has leaned on Latino voters and turnout efforts to tilt states like Nevada, Arizona and Texas their direction in recent years.
Should Castro win the Democratic nomination and eventual presidency, he would become one of the youngest Americans to ever hold the White House, and he would be the first Hispanic to do so.
Perhaps more disturbing for Castro are the Lone Star rumblings that former U.S. Rep. Beto O'Rourke, now the most popular Democrat in Texas, is seriously considering a campaign for president. He also stressed the value of hard work, which he said he and his twin brother, Rep. Joaquín Castro (D-Texas), learned from their immigrant grandmother and their single mother.
"In this environment where Latinos in particular have been in the crosshairs, where we have a president who started his campaign on the first day attacking us, to have someone like Julián to step up for our community to defend us and to defeat this monster in the White House gives us great pride, or orgullo as we say in Spanish", said Cristóbal Alex, president of the Latino Victory Fund, which helps elect Hispanic politicians. There are about 700,000 young "Dreamers" who were brought into the US illegally as children; advocates want to provide them with protection deportation and a chance to apply for citizenship.
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Sen. Kamala Harris of California this past week published a memoir, a staple of presidential candidates.
Castro is aware he lacks the name recognition of potential 2020 rivals or the buzz surrounding O'Rourke, whose flirtations with 2020 have tantalized donors and activists after a close race previous year against Sen.
Castro, however, may not be the only Texan in the race. "Yeah, we have to have border security", he said.
The Castros grew up in an impoverished neighborhood of San Antonio and were raised by a single mother. He has always been viewed as a rising star in the Democratic Party since he first landed on the national scene by delivering the keynote speech for President Barack Obama at the 2012 Democratic National Convention. Two years later, Hillary Clinton also considered him as a possible vice presidential running mate.
Castro was born into a well-known activist family.
Castro reportedly already has his first campaign stop in mind.
"I'm running for president because it's time for new leadership".
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