Floundering presidential candidate and former Rep. Robert Francis “Beto” O’Rourke (D-TX) will return to the campaign trail Thursday with a “major address to the nation” in El, Paso, Texas.
In a statement, the O’Rourke campaign said the candidate will deliver remarks detailing “the path forward for his presidential campaign and for the future of the country.”
— Elizabeth Landers (@ElizLanders) August 14, 2019
O’Rourke has remained in El Paso, his hometown and former congressional district, since the city’s deadly mass shooting that claimed 22 lives and left 25 wounded on August 3rd. The White House hopeful has repeatedly blamed President Donald Trump for the shooting and urged him not to visit El Paso in wake of the tragedy — a demand the president ignored.
“He is a racist, and he stokes racism in this country. And it does not just offend our sensibilities; it fundamentally changes the character of this country, and it leads to violence,” the ex-congressman told reporters. “And again, there are still details that we are waiting on, but I’m just following the lead that I’ve heard from the El Paso Police Department where they say there are strong indications that this shooter wrote that manifesto and this was inspired by his hatred of people here in this community.”
In an opinion-editorial published Tuesday by CNN, O’Rourke claimed conservative media outlets such as Breitbart News, Fox News, and Sinclair Media have sowed the “seeds of terror” akin to the tragedy in El Paso.
“The seeds of terror we saw that August day are transmitted day and night on Fox News, the most watched cable news channel in the country,” O’Rourke alleged. “They are amplified by right-wing websites like Breitbart, and in messages forced onto local news broadcasts by Sinclair Media. They metastasize on Facebook. And they filter up from grotesque online havens for white supremacists who preach intolerance and worship violence.”
O’Rourke will return to the campaign trail amid calls from the corporate media and Hollywood for him to drop out to run for the Senate in Texas against incumbent Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX).
“Drop out of the race for president and come back to Texas to run for senator,” the Houston Chronicle wrote this week. “The chances of winning the race you’re in now are vanishingly small. And Texas needs you.”
“Imagine the effect you could have on our state. Ideas get sharper when they’re challenged, when points of view clash. We think Texas will get smarter, and its politics more sophisticated, if campaigns here were a true test of ideas, not one-sided races set to autopilot,” the article added.
On Tuesday, actress Sharon Stone urged O’Rourke to “help” the U.S. by mounting a challenge to Cornyn.
“.@BetoORourke you have a huge future in politics, please run for Senate and win! We need you so much! Help your country! Thank you !” she tweeted.
A RealClearPolitics average of polls shows the Texas Democrat polling nationally at 2 percent.
In 2018, O’Rourke lost a Senate bid against incumbent Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) despite raising $30 million in campaign dollars and enjoying glowing corporate media press and support from Hollywood.