The 2018 midterms are over. Naturally, that means that Politics, Inc. is gearing up for 2020. And in Iowa, Democrats have invited the would-be Texas Senator Beto O’Rourke, who lost to Ted Cruz last week, to their state.
The Dallas Morning News reports: “On Monday morning, six days after the El Paso Democrat fell just short against U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, the Polk County Democratic Party in Des Moines — home to one third of Iowa’s Democratic voters — invited him to visit.”
News of the invitation isn’t hard to understand: “[O’Rourke] raised an eye-popping $70 million in a bid to turn Texas purple, falling short by just 2.6 percentage points, the closest a Texas Democrat has come to nabbing a statewide office in two decades.”
Those numbers are impressive; that level of fundraising is more on par with a presidential rather than a Senate race. But can a failed Texas Senator really be turned into a 2020 Democrat to take on President Donald J. Trump?
Some Iowa Democrats think he has presidential qualities reminiscent of Barack Obama: “‘We would love to host him,’ [Polk County Democrats’ Chair Sean] Bagniewski said. ‘He was unapologetically progressive. He’s a young face. He wasn’t afraid to be himself. Democrats are often very poll tested, very consultant-driven. He was more authentic in a way that people haven’t seen since Barack Obama, so he connected with people nationwide in ways that some of our more cautious political leaders haven’t.'”
A POLITICO/Morning Consult poll has O’Rourke in the top 3 names that Democrats say they’d like to run against Trump in 2020, trailing only Obama VP Joe Biden and sitting Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT).
The Iowa caucuses are at this time set to take place on February 3, 2020.