Obama protege Julian Castro joins 2020 presidential race


Texas Democrat Julian Castro, a former San Antonio mayor who went on to be the top United States housing official, formally announced his White House bid on Saturday, making him the first Hispanic in what looks to be a crowded field of candidates vying to challenge President Donald Trump in the November 2020 election.

Castro, a Mexican-American politician who previously served five terms as the mayor of San Antonio, countered that as president he would "make sure that we invest in sensible, smart and effective border security that includes personnel, that includes the smart use of technology and that does not scapegoat these immigrants but tries to look for a way that we can get to comprehensive immigration reform to fix our broken immigration system".

Often called a rising star in the Democratic Party, Castro, who was Obama's housing secretary - and the youngest member of that cabinet - is expected to be part of a diverse field of candidates eager to challenge President Donald Trump.

"She taught my brother and me that if you want to make a change in your life, in your community, you don't wait, you work", Julián Castro said of his mother in the video.

Julian Castro may already be behind in the polls, but no matter-he's boldly running for president.

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.

The announcement came one day after Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, D-Hawaii, told CNN she intends to run.

Acknowledging that his run for the White House was a long shot, as a growing number of high-profile Democrats are expected to enter the race, Castro referred to his hometown of San Antonio.

"There is no way in hell that caging babies is a smart or a right or good way to do it".

Mayor and Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julian Castro waves as he arrives with his family to an event where he announced his decision to seek the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination Jan. 12 2019 in San Antonio
Eric Gay AP

Castro is the identical twin brother of Joaquín Castro, who now represents Texas's 20th congressional district.

Castro, however, may not be the only Texan in the race.

The Castros grew up in an impoverished neighborhood of San Antonio and were raised by a single mother. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., and Sen.

Castro, whose campaign slogan is "One Nation".

The then-mayor rose to national prominence in 2012 when he was selected to give the keynote address at the Democratic National Convention.

A lawyer by training, Castro was born into a noted family of political activists.

Castro, who was considered on the short list to be Hillary Clinton's running mate in the 2016 election, has been out of the political spotlight for the past two years, at a time when politics has become all-consuming across America.

Michael Ahrens, a spokesman for the Republican National Committee, said in an emailed statement that Castro "has made history by becoming one of the biggest lightweights to ever run for president".

Castro's strong oratory skills, experience as Barack Obama's housing secretary and as mayor of the nation's seventh largest city, not to mention his telegenic charisma, could help propel the Texas native into the top tier. He also said he doesn't plan to accept any PAC money for his campaign.