Conservative group targets O'Rourke in new ad amid 2020 speculation

The conservative group Club for Growth has launched a new advertisement targeting former Rep. Beto O'RourkeBeto O'RourkeWarren defends, Buttigieg attacks in debate that shrank the field Warren leads in speaking time during debate Democrats wrangle over whether to break up Big Tech in debate first MORE (D-Texas) ahead of his possible White House bid.

The commercial, titled "Pedigree," argues O'Rourke has drawn unwarranted comparisons to former President Obama and describes O'Rourke as benefitting from the privilege of being a white man.

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Politico reported that the advertisement is expected to begin airing this week in Iowa, where the Democratic Party's first-in-the-nation caucuses will be held in February next year. O'Rourke, who narrowly lost a Senate race last year to Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzThe Hill's Morning Report - Trump grapples with Turkey controversy This week: Congress returns to chaotic Washington The Hill's Morning Report - Lawmakers return to work as Dem candidates set to debate MORE (R-Texas), has not announced a bid for the Democratic nomination in 2020 but has said he is considering one.

The Club for Growth ad says O'Rourke and Obama "blazed different paths" after earning undergraduate degrees from Columbia University.

"Obama championed progressive causes on campus, seeking to combat inequality and harmful stereotypes. Beto perpetuated them, casting aspersions on working women," the ad's narrator says.

"Obama went on to become the first African-American editor of the Harvard Law Review, breaking barriers," the narrator later adds. "Beto crashed into them, causing a collision while driving drunk then fleeing the scene to avoid accountability. His charges were dropped as people of color languished behind bars for far less."

The ad then asks whether those events were "youthful indiscretions or threads in a lifelong pattern revealing an indelible sense of entitlement."

Club for Growth President David McIntosh told Politico that the group targeted O'Rourke because it worries that, if he were the nominee, he would have a chance to win Texas.

“We watched what he did in Texas in the race against Cruz and realized his potential within the Democratic primary system is enormously larger than what people are giving him credit for right now. We realized, here is a real potential threat because if he is the nominee then Texas suddenly is in play,” McIntosh said.

If O'Rourke were to jump in the 2020 race, he would be joining an already crowded field of high-profile Democratic candidates.

Sens. Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisWarren defends, Buttigieg attacks in debate that shrank the field Five takeaways from the Democratic debate in Ohio Warren leads in speaking time during debate MORE (D-Calif.), Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenWarren defends, Buttigieg attacks in debate that shrank the field Five takeaways from the Democratic debate in Ohio New study: Full-scale 'Medicare for All' costs trillion over 10 years MORE (D-Mass.), Corey Booker (D-N.J.) and Bernie SandersBernie SandersWarren defends, Buttigieg attacks in debate that shrank the field Five takeaways from the Democratic debate in Ohio New study: Full-scale 'Medicare for All' costs trillion over 10 years MORE (I-Vt.) have already jumped into the crowded White House race.

Former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenWarren defends, Buttigieg attacks in debate that shrank the field Five takeaways from the Democratic debate in Ohio New study: Full-scale 'Medicare for All' costs trillion over 10 years MORE is also mulling a possible bid.

A recent Iowa poll shows O'Rourke in fifth place among the possible Democratic contenders, with Biden and Sanders leading the field.