Julián Castro Drops Out of 2020 Race - Rolling Stone
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Julián Castro Drops Out of 2020 Race

Castro was the only Latino running for president in 2020, as Hispanics become the largest racial and ethnic minority in the electorate

Democratic presidential hopeful former Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Julian Castro gestures during a town hall devoted to LGBTQ issues hosted by CNN and the Human rights Campaign Foundation at The Novo in Los Angeles on October 10, 2019. (Photo by Robyn Beck / AFP) (Photo by ROBYN BECK/AFP via Getty Images)

Democratic presidential hopeful former Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Julian Castro dropped out of the 2020 race on Thursday.

Robyn Beck/AFP/Getty Images

Former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julián Castro ended his presidential campaign on Thursday morning. The Texas Democrat announced the decision on Twitter.

Castro, the only Latino who ran for president in 2020 — the year that Hispanics will become the largest racial and ethnic minority in the electorate — had struggled to pull more than 2 percent in national polls. He exits the race as it is increasingly dominated by four figures, all of them white: Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, and Pete Buttigieg.

Castro was critical of the emphasis the Democratic primary puts on the overwhelmingly white states of Iowa and New Hampshire. He campaigned in both states, but also devoted a large share of his time on the campaign trail to marginalized communities: visiting homeless encampments in Oakland and Las Vegas, an Ohio church offering sanctuary to an undocumented immigrant, and Puerto Rico, where U.S. citizens are still recovering from Hurricane Maria. His campaign will be remembered for those moments and for the social-justice bent of his policy proposals: decriminalizing border crossings, accepting climate refugees, ending hunger, and reforming the criminal justice system.

 

Castro’s campaign will also be remembered for his kneecapping of fellow Texan Beto O’Rourke in an early debate. O’Rourke, an early favorite in the race, was already struggling by early summer, but Castro’s attack — connecting O’Rourke’s view that border crossings should not be decriminalized with the Trump administration’s family separation policy — helped to accelerate O’Rourke’s free-fall.

“I’m so proud of everything we’ve accomplished together,” Castro wrote on Twitter. “I’m going to keep fighting for an America where everyone counts — I hope you’ll join me in that fight.”

Castro hasn’t, as yet, given any indication where he plans to take the fight, but it won’t be to the Senate — the deadline to file for the Texas 2020 race was in early December.

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