Former Representative Beto O’Rourke officially announced on Monday that he is running for Texas governor in 2022.
why it matters: The formal announcement of his campaign has put an end to speculation that O’Rourke will challenge incumbent Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) in next year’s elections.
- Nerdshala revealed in a scoop in September that O’Rook was planning his political return by running for governor next year.
- His run gives Democrats a high-profile candidate with a national fundraising network to challenge Abbott.
what is he saying: In a new campaign video, O’Rook frames his decision to walk around Texas’ deadly winter storm in February, which he says has left Texans “abandoned by those who have been selected for service.”
- “Those in a state of public trust have stopped listening, serving, and paying attention to – and trusting – the people of Texas,” he said.
- Instead of focusing on policies most Texans agree with — such as expanding Medicaid and legalizing marijuana — O’Rook said his Republican allies focused on “extremist policies” such as gun rights and abortion.
in an interview with him Texas Tribune Monday, O’Rook said that Abbott, “doesn’t trust women to make their health care decisions, doesn’t trust police chiefs when they tell her not to sign the permitless carry bill into law, she He doesn’t trust voters so he changes the rules for our elections, and he doesn’t trust local communities,” in regards to building his own pandemic policies.
big picture: O’Rook was the target of Abbott attack ads that branded him as “Wrong Way O’Rourke” even before announcing his bid for governor.
- A poll conducted earlier this month showed the two virtually bonded.