Joaquin Castro won't run for Senate in Texas

Joaquin Castro won't run for Senate in Texas
© Stefani Reynolds

Rep. Joaquin CastroJoaquin CastroThe exhaustion of Democrats' anti-Trump delusions Juan Williams: Democrats finally hit Trump where it hurts Texas Democrats tap Joaquin Castro to deliver key address MORE (D-Texas) will not challenge Sen. John CornynJohn CornynThe Hill's Morning Report - Trump on defense over economic jitters Democrats keen to take on Cornyn despite formidable challenges The Hill's Campaign Report: Battle for Senate begins to take shape MORE (R-Texas) in 2020, according to an interview he did with Hearst Newspapers.

"Right now, I’m going to focus on my work in the House of Representatives. I’ve been doing what I feel is important and meaningful work here," Castro said in the interview, which was carried by the Houston Chronicle. "If and when I run for another office, it is likely to be something that takes me back home to Texas."

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Castro becomes the latest high-profile Democrat to decline to run for the Senate, where Republicans hold a 53-seat majority.

Democrats had expected to mount a big push to retake the Senate next year, given that Republicans are defending 22 seats, while Democrats have 12 seats on the table. 

But earlier this week, former Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacy Abrams confirmed she would not challenge Sen. David Perdue (R-Ga.).

Other Democrats have decided to run for president in 2020 instead, including former Colorado Gov. John HickenlooperJohn Wright HickenlooperPoll: Trump trails three Democrats by 10 points in Colorado The Hill's Campaign Report: Battle for Senate begins to take shape The Hill's Morning Report — Trump and the new Israel-'squad' controversy MORE, who opted not to challenge Sen. Cory GardnerCory Scott GardnerPoll: Trump trails three Democrats by 10 points in Colorado The Hill's Campaign Report: Battle for Senate begins to take shape The Hill's Morning Report — Trump and the new Israel-'squad' controversy MORE (R-Colo.), and Castro's twin brother, former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julián Castro.

Joaquin Castro’s decision will mean a clearer path to the Democratic nomination for MJ Hegar, an Air Force veteran who narrowly lost a House race to Rep. John CarterJohn Rice CarterDemocrats keen to take on Cornyn despite formidable challenges Texas Democratic Senate candidate says she does not support Green New Deal Population shifts set up huge House battleground MORE (R-Texas) in 2018 and who announced her candidacy for Senate in Texas last week. 

Castro said he was impressed with Hegar, telling the publication that regardless of who was nominated, "I’ll do everything I can to help our Democratic nominee win."