Former Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D) is planning a road trip outside his home state of Texas as he weighs whether to run for the Democratic presidential nomination in 2020, according to The Wall Street Journal.
O’Rourke is calling on his aides to plan for him a solo trip that’ll begin in El Paso, which he represented in Congress for six years, and include stops outside of the Lone Star State to places such as community colleges, the Journal reported, citing people familiar with the plans.
But he's steering clear of early primary and caucus states like Iowa, according to the Journal.
The former Democratic congressman plans to make the trip alone — though he may track his travels on social media, which he made a central part of his tech savvy Senate campaign.
O’Rourke, who lost a surprisingly narrow bid against Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzPoll: Trump dominates 2024 Republican primary field Republican politicians: Let OSHA do its job O'Rourke prepping run for governor in Texas: report MORE (R-Texas) last November, has emerged as a top potential contender in 2020.
O’Rourke raised an eye-popping $80 million in his Senate race and generated a groundswell of attention both inside and outside of Texas.
During his Senate campaign, he poured cold water on a presidential campaign. But after the 2018 November midterms, O’Rourke has not ruled out a run for the White House.
Meanwhile, the “Draft Beto” campaign, which was formed late last year by a group of Democratic activists, has been beefing up the organization with new staff hires in early primary and caucus states. The group has now added staffers in South Carolina and Nevada.
O’Rourke’s planned trip comes as other potential White House hopefuls plan blitzes in early nominating states, like Iowa and New Hampshire.
Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenDemocrats confront 'Rubik's cube on steroids' The Trojan Horse of protectionism Federal Reserve officials' stock trading sparks ethics review MORE (D-Mass.), who recently announced she’s forming an exploratory committee, made a multi-stop trip in Iowa this past weekend in her first trip since running for president.
And former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julián Castro (D) is set to formalize his presidential campaign on Saturday and soon after travel to New Hampshire.
O’Rourke has started to slowly climb the early 2020 polls of the likely crowded Democratic field. But former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenHouse clears bill to provide veterans with cost-of-living adjustment On The Money — Dems dare GOP to vote for shutdown, default To reduce poverty, stop burdening the poor: What Joe Manchin gets wrong about the child tax credit MORE and Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersPelosi says House members would not vote on spending bill topline higher than Senate's Groups push lawmakers to use defense bill to end support for Saudis in Yemen civil war Congress must address the looming debt crisis MORE (I-Vt.) are both still the early leaders as they consider bids to take on President TrumpDonald TrumpTrump takes shot at new GOP candidate in Ohio over Cleveland nickname GOP political operatives indicted over illegal campaign contribution from Russian national in 2016 On The Money — Dems dare GOP to vote for shutdown, default MORE.
According to The New York Times, Biden will likely make a decision about 2020 within the next two weeks.