Julian Castro, Former Obama Housing Chief, Announces 2020 Presidential Run

Julian Castro, Former Obama Housing Chief, Announces 2020 Presidential Run

"This policy of separating children from their parents and the bad way that Customs and Border Protection has managed its responsibilities - including the deaths of two children within the last few weeks - that's a real tragedy".

Castro said his life experiences and public service proved he was capable of addressing the plight of everyday citizens.

Castro is the first Mexican-American and first San Antonio native to seek the White House.

After leaving the Obama administration, Castro formed a political action committee and traveled the country campaigning for Democratic candidates on the 2018 midterm ballot. In 2016, she alarmed fellow Democrats when she met with Donald Trump during his transition to president and later when she took a secret trip to Syria and met with President Bashar Assad, who has been accused of war crimes and genocide. From 2014-2017 he served as the HUD secretary under Obama, and was a top pick to be Hillary Clinton's running mate in 2016 before Tim Kaine was tapped.

Castro made his announcement in Plaza Guadalupe in his hometown in Texas. Besides immigration, his platform so far highlights Medicare for all, universal access to a prekindergarten education and higher taxes for corporations and wealthier Americans to generate funds for domestic needs.

However, Senator Elizabeth Warren announced last month she was setting up an exploratory committee to consider a run.

Even some supporters at Castro's announcement could be torn if O'Rourke gets in the race. He only barely registers in polls and sometimes isn't included as an option at all. The committee held a hearing on "HUD Accountability".

Until now only former congressman John Delaney has formally launched a campaign, more than a year ago.

Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), who has been in the midst of a book tour, also is expected to launch a presidential bid soon.

Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii, a progressive Democrat, said Friday she will officially announce her presidential run in the coming days.

More news: Peyton Manning recommended Adam Gase to Jets

"Today we're falling backwards instead of moving forward", he said at his announcement event Saturday. It is one that will resonate with a lot of Americans who are looking for opportunities that are slipping away.

The grandson of an immigrant from Mexico, Castro said his grandmother could have never imagined that two generations later one son would be a member of Congress and another would be standing before the crowd to say, "I am a candidate for the president of the United States of America".

Castro is a fluent Spanish speaker, a possible advantage in states with large Hispanic populations such as Florida and Arizona.

"We say no to building a wall and say yes to building community", he added, to roars from the crowd.

Mr Castro, 44, the grandson of a Mexican immigrant who would be the first Hispanic elected president, served as secretary of Housing and Urban Development under former President Barack Obama and has always been viewed as a rising star in the party.

If he wins, he'd be the first identical twin elected president.

So, too, is former Rep. Beto O'Rourke, D-Texas., who could be more of a challenge.

Rep. John Delaney of Maryland is already running for president, and Hawaii Rep. Tulsi Gabbard said in an interview Friday that she has made a decision to run for the White House.

The former HUD secretary, who campaigned for O'Rourke in 2018, told The Associated Press last month that he wasn't anxious if he is not testing very high right now in surveys.

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