With Few Options, Texas Dems Need Beto O'Rourke to Challenge Gov. Abbott in 2022

The rising stars of the Democratic Party aren't ready to mount major statewide campaigns

Greg Abbott And Beto O'Rourke
The Dallas Morning News

With few other viable options, Texas Democrats are hoping that next year former Rep. Beto O'Rourke challenges Republican incumbent Greg Abbott for governor.

The El Paso Democrat is considering running for governor, saying that Abbott has failed Texas during the pandemic. He later criticized his handling of the February winter storm that left millions of Texans without power and water. That has fueled speculation that O'Rourke is all but in the governor's race, even though he's just as likely to opt against the underdog campaign.

"It's very hard for us to recruit candidates right now, when you have somebody looking like he's going to run," Texas Democratic Party Chairman Gilberto Hinojosa told me last week. "Right now we're just taking a wait and see attitude on this thing."

Hinojosa didn't rule out former U.S. Housing Secretary and former San Antonio Mayor Julián Castro as a potential candidate, even though Castro has already opted against running in 2022.

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