Beto O'Rourke arrives in Iowa hours after announcing 2020 run

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Remix by Jason Reed

He said that the crises in our economy, democracy and climate "will either consume us or they will afford us the greatest opportunity to unleash the genius of the United States of America".

In the clip, O'Rourke promised to run a "positive campaign that seeks to bring out the very best from every single one of us - that seeks to unite a very divided country".

"We saw the power of this in Texas, where people allowed no difference, however great or however small, to stand between them and divide us", O'Rourke said. The challenges we face are the greatest in living memory.

Little touched upon during his hyped Senate run, but may prove a liability in the Democratic primary, is O'Rourke's mixed voting record.

He has been discussed as a potential candidate ever since his unexpectedly tight race past year to unseat Senator Ted Cruz, when his grassroots campaign of inclusion and getting people politically involved gained national attention. O'Rourke didn't just focus his campaigning on urban and suburban areas typically rich with Democratic voters - he traveled to all 254 Texas counties, committing to visit even the reddest, most rural places. He nonetheless harnessed growing nationwide popularity to rake in $80-plus million during the Senate bid, including a staggering $38 million from July to September 2018 alone.




The bid comes three and a half months after a narrow loss for Senate in Texas, a campaign that catapulted the 46-year-old, three-term lawmaker from El Paso to national prominence.

O'Rourke confirmed his plan to formally announce his candidacy on Thursday morning to El Paso NBC affiliate KTSM. Cory Booker (N.J.), Elizabeth Warren (Mass.), Amy Klobuchar (Minn.), Kirsten Gillibrand (N.Y.) and Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.). He's also planning a campaign rally in El Paso on March 30.

The former Texas congressman said at a campaign event in Iowa Thursday that as marijuana use has increased, tobacco use has "plummeted" in the last 40 years as it has been treated as a public health issue and marketed as "not cool". And I think that's a very legitimate basis upon which to make a decision. "Man, I'm just born to be in it, and want to do everything I humanly can for this country at this moment".

Harris fundraised off O'Rourke's entrance into the race, sending an email to supporters that says she looks "forward to engaging in substantive debates with each of these candidates - including the newest to join the race today, Beto O'Rourke - and ultimately selecting a Democratic nominee who will take on and beat Donald Trump in November of 2020".

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