In Dem-friendly Austin, Castro Seeks to Build on Momentum While O'Rourke Tries Rekindle Texas Magic

AUSTIN -- Texas' two presidential candidates -- one reeling from a lackluster performance and the other riding high after some unexpected momentum -- will hold dueling campaign events seven blocks from each other Friday as they try to shore up support following the first Democratic presidential candidate debate.Julian Castro, riding high after calling out his Texas rival over immigration policy during Wednesday night’s televised debate, will be at a meet-and-greet organized by the Texas Democratic Party at Cheer Up Charlie’s at 7 p.m., a trendy Austin venue with vegan food and LGBT ties. A few blocks north, Beto O’Rourke, facing critiques from an awkward debate performance where his trademark Spanish became a viral meme, will hold his own event at the legendary political bar Scholtz Garten at 6 p.m. not far from the state capitol. Castro’s campaign stop has been on the books for about a week. O’Rourke announced something of a competing campaign event Thursday morning -- in the liberal bastion where he regularly drew crowds of thousands of screaming supporters during his 2018 U.S. Senate race. The two candidates, who are vying for the unofficial title of being the top Texan in the race to be the Democratic nominee, will need to take different approaches to the night given the reception they each received in Wednesday night’s debate, said Sylvia Gonzalez-Gorman, a political science professor at the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley.   Continue reading...

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