Beto O’Rourke Drops Presidential Bid

Beto O’Rourke, the former Texas congressman, announced last Friday, Nov. 1,  that he would be withdrawing from the presidential race. O’Rourke gained immense popularity and support from his initial Senate campaign in 2018, where his championing of liberal policies – including his support of nationwide Medicare program and strict gun-control  – garnered considerable support from Democratic voters. His public image, likened to that of presidential candidate Bernie Sanders, drew considerable attention from news outlets. His platform was compared extensively to Sander’s own, with critics noting their considerable similarities while weighing the differences of policies, rhetoric, and physical vitality. In an article by the NY Times, O’Rourke and Sander’s age was considered an important factor in the Presidential bid; with Sander’s being 77 and O’Rourke being 46, questions of physical competence were dragged into the spotlight as each candidate was carefully inspected under the public eye. But neither O’Rourke’s physical nor political qualities seemed to be behind his Friday announcement.

Courtesy: WESA

O’Rourke announced to supporters in Des Moines, confirmed in a post on Medium and repeated through email that he would be withdrawing from the Presidential race. Although his bid started off with considerable support, O’Rourke cites significant financial challenges as the main proponent in his campaign’s demise. In his Medium post, O’Rourke writes that it “is clear to me now that this campaign does not have the means to move forward successfully” and that it is in the best interest of the Democratic Party, and of the country,  to “unify around a nominee.”

Other sources agree that lack of considerable financial support created an uncertain future for the campaign’s future, but also cite O’Rourke’s decision to reframe his candidacy to align more with more aggressive policies geared towards issues of race and immigration as miscalculated steps which hurt his position. Alongside these changes, the NY Times noted that O’Rourke failed to intake more money than his campaign was spending; although he raised six million on the first day of his campaign, the Beto campaign failed to raise the same amount over the course of the rest of its operation. His strategies, including expensive magazine covers and campaign trips throughout the Southwest, were also considered ill-planned.

Courtesy: Variety

No statement has been released about O’Rourke’s plans for the future, nor if he intends to run for any other political office. He has, however, stated that he will unwaveringly support the next Democratic nominee.  

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