Joaquin Castro closing in on 2020 Senate bid: report

Joaquin Castro closing in on 2020 Senate bid: report
© Stefani Reynolds

Rep. Joaquin CastroJoaquin Castro Dems brush off unemployment rate, say Hispanics will reject Trump in 2020 Lawmakers renew push to create American Latino Smithsonian museum Joaquin Castro won't run for Senate in Texas MORE (D-Texas) is reportedly closing in on a bid to challenge Sen. John CornynJohn CornynTrump's immigration push faces Capitol Hill buzzsaw The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Pass USMCA Coalition - Restrictive state abortion laws ignite fiery 2020 debate Sinema, Gallagher fastest lawmakers in charity race MORE (R-Texas) for his Senate seat in 2020.

Texas Monthly reported Friday that the San Antonio Democrat is “all but certain” to enter next year’s Senate contest, citing a source familiar with his thinking.

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Matthew Jones, a campaign adviser to Castro, said in an email that the congressman “will have an announcement in the near future.”

If Castro enters the race, he would become the first high-profile candidate to mount a campaign against Cornyn, a three-term Republican and former Senate majority whip with a well-financed political operation.

Cornyn's campaign closed out 2018 with a nearly $5.8 million campaign bank account.

Meanwhile, Castro’s House campaign finished the year with $128,000 on hand, according to his most recent filing with the Federal Election Commission (FEC).

Cornyn's campaign office said it was looking forward to a potential challenge from Castro.

 

"Whether it’s Hurricane Harvey relief or the Green New Deal, time and again Congressman Castro has stood with Nancy PelosiNancy Patricia D'Alesandro PelosiTlaib calls on Amash to join impeachment resolution 5 things to watch as Trump, Dems clash over investigations GOP lawmaker: Trump has engaged in multiple actions that 'meet the threshold for impeachment' MORE at the expense of Texans,” said John Jackson, Cornyn's campaign manager, in a statement.

“John Cornyn looks forward to contrasting the Democrat-Socialist agenda with the policies that have made Texas the best state to live, work, and raise a family.”

Castro has been floated for months as a potential challenger to Cornyn. But speculation of a Senate campaign had been overshadowed recently by rumors that former Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-Texas), whose 2018 challenge to Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward Cruz Eye-popping number of Dems: I can beat Trump 'SleepyCreepy Joe' and 'Crazy Bernie': Trump seeks to define 2020 Dems with insults The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Pass USMCA Coalition - Restrictive state abortion laws ignite fiery 2020 debate MORE (R-Texas) drew intense national attention, could look to take on Cornyn instead.

O’Rourke ended months of speculation about his political future on Thursday, announcing that he would run for president in 2020 and leaving the Democratic field in the Texas Senate race wide open. 

Among O'Rourke's fellow hopefuls for the White House nomination is Castro's twin brother, former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julián Castro. 

News of a possible Senate announcement comes a day after the Senate passed a resolution overturning President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump calls for Republicans to be 'united' on abortion Tlaib calls on Amash to join impeachment resolution Facebook temporarily suspended conservative commentator Candace Owens MORE’s national emergency declaration seeking funding to construct his long-promised wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.

That vote was seen as a victory for Castro, who initiated the resolution in the House. It passed in the lower chamber last month.

Trump vetoed the measure on Friday, the first veto of his presidency.

-- Updated at 6:32 p.m.