By Patrick Culcasi || Layout Assistant
The massive pool of Democratic Presidential nominees has shrunk yet again. Beto O’Rourke has dropped out of the race, joining the crowd of eight other candidates who did the same. This may come as a shock to some, due to O’Rourke’s seemingly recent rise to stardom after he nearly defeated Ted Cruz for the seat on Texas Senate last year. Now he will sit this election out due to a lack of funds. Beto O’Rourke’s campaign shockingly raised more money in the first two days than it has since, and that was back in March. Last Friday, November 1st, Beto O’Rourke announced his plan to drop out of the race in Iowa.
On his way out, O’Rourke made a couple of statements regarding the future of the Democratic party as well as his further plans for public office. In a speech to his supporters in Iowa last week, O’Rourke pledged his full support to whoever is awarded the Democratic nomination, saying that he will support them “with everything that I’ve got.” That being said, many people would expect the politician, whose popularity seems to be in its infancy, to run for office yet again. O’Rourke has dismissed that idea, saying that he couldn’t see himself running for public office unless he was already the nominee. He claims that his service to the country from here on out will not be in public office.
Many attribute O’Rourke’s fall from grace to his inexperience in the higher levels of politics. The last position he held was Representative for the 16th Congressional District of Texas. He attempted to challenge the incumbent Ted Cruz, a former presidential candidate himself, but failed and then attempted to run for the highest office in the country. That’s a big step, and many associate O’Rourke’s removal from the race and lack of funds to his disorganized and relatively inexperienced campaign. Towards the tail end of his Presidential run, some of O’Rourke’s funders approached him in the hope of convincing him to drop out and try for another Senate bid, he declined and now he is walking away empty-handed.
At times people questioned O’Rourke’s actions, like when he live-streamed a dentist appointment when other candidates were busy talking to lawmakers and donors, something many perceived to be something he and his staff failed to do sufficiently. In a campaign where fundraising is everything, O’Rourke may have ignored the important opportunities to talk to governmental entities and donors in favor of gaining popularity with the electorate. He neglected to share his availability with reporters, stumbled through a couple of debates, and maybe most shockingly, he went into his campaign without a campaign manager the day he announced his bid.
This leaves the Democratic field slightly smaller – but still crowded, with more than a dozen hopefuls ready to take on Iowa and take their campaigns to the next level. O’Rourke is one of the first to fall, but he will not be the last.
Sophomore Patrick Culcasi is a layout assistant. His email is firstname.lastname@example.org