Texas congresswoman-elect says she would ‘love’ to see Beto run in 2020

Texas Rep.-elect Veronica Escobar (D) says she would welcome a 2020 presidential bid from Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D), who last week lost his midterm Senate race against Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzLawmakers spar over surveillance flight treaty with Russia Senators voice support for Iran protesters but stop short of taking action Prisons chief: FBI investigating whether 'criminal enterprise' played role in Epstein death MORE (R).

“He should run — I would love to see that happen,” Escobar told Hill.TV correspondent Molly Hooper during an interview that aired on Wednesday.

The former El Paso County judge went on to praise O’Rourke’s leadership, saying she has “a lot of love” for the congressman’s vision of unity and dignity for the country as a whole.

O’Rourke ran a closer-than-expected campaign against Cruz, losing last week by only 2.5 points.

But Escobar hopes the El Paso lawmaker's loss won’t dim his political ambitions in the future.

“I love that he cares about each and every person — that’s what government is about, and I think he’s an exemplary public servant and I don’t want us to lose him,” she said.

O’Rourke gained national attention in his red-state bid, during which he raised a staggering $70 million.

Speculation has grown on whether O'Rourke might take on President TrumpDonald John TrumpFive takeaways from the Democratic debate As Buttigieg rises, Biden is still the target Leading Democrats largely pull punches at debate MORE in 2020 bid, though he's repeatedly said he's not interested. According to a Politico/Morning Consult poll, O’Rourke is among the top three possible Democratic 2020 contenders, following Former Vice President Biden and Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersFive takeaways from the Democratic debate As Buttigieg rises, Biden is still the target Leading Democrats largely pull punches at debate MORE (I-Vt.)

Despite O’Rourke’s loss, last week’s midterm elections were still a historic night for the Lone Star State.

Escobar is poised to take over O’Rourke’s seat in Texas’s 16th District in January, becoming one of the first two Latinas from Texas elected to Congress.

— Tess Bonn