One of the biggest newspapers in Texas had a message for Beto O’Rourke over the weekend. The editorial team of the Houston Chronicle told O’Rourke “Texas needs you.” The team then asked O’Rourke to drop out of the 2020 presidential race and run against GOP incumbent Sen, John Comyn.
The editorial team began its plea with “Our thinking this week, amid all the carnage and grief and finger-pointing, has been in part on Beto O’Rourke, the presidential candidate from El Paso, where 22 people were killed last Saturday. Our sympathy is devoted to the dead and their families, of course — but Beto has been on our minds, too.”
The newspaper editorial team pointed out a viral moment from last week in which O’Rourke criticized much of the media for its coverage of Donald Trump’s racist rhetoric. The editorial team wrote that the moment reminded voters that they “aren’t used to seeing candidates act like real people.”
Last week, O’Rourke put his presidential campaign on the back burner to stay in El Paso in the wake of a mass shooting that killed 22 and left dozens of others injured. According to authorities, the shooter had written a manifesto, which he published on the website 8chan, a well- known hub for white nationalists. The lone gunman had anti-immigration and anti- Latino ideologies.
“Frankly, it’s made us wish O’Rourke would shift gears, and rather than unpause his presidential campaign, we’d like to see him take a new direction,” the editorial board wrote. “So Beto, if you’re listening: Come home. Drop out of the race for president and come back to Texas to run for senator. The chances of winning the race you’re in now are vanishingly small.
“And Texas needs you,” the board continued.
O’Rourke failed to unseat Sen. Ted Cruz in the 2018 and the editorial team acknowledged that it “wouldn’t be easy” for O’Rourke to beat incumbent Sen. John Cornyn in 2020.
“But a lot has changed since 2018,” the newspaper added. “You had a lot to do with that — and Trump is no longer rock-solid in Texas. Neither are the Republicans who support him.”
When O’Rourke announced his presidential candidacy back in March, he dominated headlines. At the time, he raised $6.1 million in the first 24 hours of his campaign.