WASHINGTON (AP) — When former Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke stormed into the presidential race he seemed to have two immediately viable pathways to the Democratic nomination.
His more-moderate, bipartisan appeal encroached on Joe Biden’s but offered a fresh-faced, high-energy optimism the former vice president didn’t. Then there was speaking fluent Spanish and hailing from the U.S.-Mexico border. Those appeared antidotes to the Trump administration’s hardline immigration policies and O’Rourke being a white male in a deeply diverse primary.
But, as O’Rourke’s 2020 star has faded, he’s been eclipsed by another younger white, male candidate offering pragmatic, largely moderate ideas in 37-year-old Mayor Pete Buttigieg of South Bend, Indiana.
O’Rourke has similarly been overshadowed on border issues of late by fellow Texan Julián Castro, who scolded O’Rourke during the first Democratic presidential debate.