Beto O’Rourke: “I’m Just Born to Do This”

Joe Hagan, Vanity Fair, March 13, 2019

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O’Rourke is acutely aware, too, of perhaps his biggest vulnerability—being a white man in a Democratic Party yearning for a woman or a person of color, a Kamala Harris or a Cory Booker. “The government at all levels is overly represented by white men,” he says. “That’s part of the problem, and I’m a white man. So if I were to run, I think it’s just so important that those who would comprise my team looked like this country. If I were to run, if I were to win, that my administration looks like this country. It’s the only way I know to meet that challenge.

“But I totally understand people who will make a decision based on the fact that almost every single one of our presidents has been a white man, and they want something different for this country. And I think that’s a very legitimate basis upon which to make a decision. Especially in the fact that there are some really great candidates out there right now.”

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{snip} O’Rourke won [his first election to Congress] by drawing a large number of white Republican voters to his cause, which deepened suspicion from left-leaning Chicano activists. “Race begins to play a role in there somehow,” recalls Bob Moore, a former El Paso Times editor. “So when people talk about Beto’s Republican connection, there’s a ‘there’ there.”

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