O & # 39; Rourke faces a strong leftist reaction


Former representative Beto O'Rourke (D-Texas) had to face a strong reaction from the progressives in the days following his presidential campaign with great fanfare last week.

Left-wing Democrats criticized O'Rourke for a series of comments made in a Vanity Fair story preceding the opening of his campaign and in the days that followed.

Some of the remarks – such as O'Rourke's statement to Vanity Fair, referring to the presidential race, that he was "born to be there" – fueled complaints that the Texan was blinded by Privilege of the Whites ".

Others have made accusations of sexism or male privilege.

O'Rourke's nonchalant message that his wife cares for the "three children of the couple" "sometimes with my help" displeased a number of critics of the former Texas congressman who saw a weakening.

Separately, O'Rourke was forced to apologize for a fantasy of "really hate" murder he had written as a teenager in which he was writing about the kids' descent into a street.

For his part, O'Rourke said he raised $ 6.1 million in the first 24 hours of his campaign, a remarkable figure suggesting he could be in the long-term democratic battle.

But this good news was overshadowed by the difficulties, which drew the enmity of some districts of the Democratic Party for O'Rourke, while highlighting questions about his readiness.

"Fundraising aside, I can not think of a worse start for a presidential candidate," said a Democratic strategist who worked for the latest presidential campaigns and who is currently not affiliated with a campaign.

The criticism is somewhat surprising given that O'Rourke, last summer and fall, was perceived as a liberal hero as he ran against Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzO's Rourke is facing a left pressure on "Medicare for all" O Rourke does not contemplate, but does not rule out the big ones Fundraisers O 'Rourke: being a white man is not a disadvantage in 2020 Dem field PLUS (R) Texas.

O'Rourke became a national figure during this campaign and when he was narrowly defeated by Cruz, he was immediately prompted to join the race for the presidency.

But this fight took place in Texas and gave the former punk rocker an opponent to Cruz, widely hated on the left.

In the presidential primary, O'Rourke embarks on an overcrowded race with progressive heroes with their own sources of support from Sen. Bernie SandersBernard (Bernie) SandersO – Rourke faces a left pressure on "Medicare for all" O. Rourke says he will not use the word "f" for the election campaign O 'Rourke does not plan, but does not rule out the big fundraisers MORE (I-Vt.) To Sens. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann Warren O. Rourke Suffers Left Pressure on "Medicare for All" O 'Rourke says he will not use the word "f" for the campaign election O 'Rourke does not plan, but does not exclude large fund raisers (D-Mass.) And Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisO's Rourke faces a left-wing pressure on "Medicare for all" O & # 39; Rourke says he will not use the word "f" for the election campaign O 'Rourke does not plan, but does not rule out the big fundraisers MORE (D-Calif.).

Much of O'Rourke's criticism, though specific to his comments, is also about his 40-year-old status as a white man in a party that is demanding more and more the support of minorities and women.

There are other white candidates in the race, but O'Rourke is the most recent figure of the scene in this lane with two of the heavyweights of the race: Sanders, who lost the Democratic primary in 2016 and the former vice president. Joe BidenJoseph (Joe) Robinette BidenBeto could give Biden and Bernie Biden a chance: "I have the most progressive record of all those running … all those who run" HR 1 does not achieve a real reform MORE, who should participate in the race in April.

"At the heart of" Me too ", how can this party be represented by this party?" Said the critical Democratic strategist of O. Rourke. "He is the opposite of the progressive."

Tracy Sefl, a Democratic consultant who served as a substitute for Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonThe GOP legislator defends Chelsea Clinton after the confrontation over the New Zealand attacks. Klobuchar: race and gender equality should not be a litmus test for 2020 Democrat candidate Kirsten Gillibrand officially announces that the White House will be run MOREThe 2016 campaign summed up this by calling it "the tyranny of the brother's culture".

"A seasoned campaigner – a woman – asked me," Is he running for president this century? "An issue that deserves to be asked and that is based on what voters have seen in recent days," Sefl said.

O'Rourke tried both to explain his words and to repel the critics.

"I have tried with an outstretched hand to try to point out that Amy has the lion's share of our family's burden – she works but is the main parent of our family, especially when I'm in the family. I sat in Congress, especially when I was there. the election campaign should also have been a moment for me to recognize that it is far too often the case, not just in politics, but just in life in general, "explained O & # 39; Rourke on the Political podcast Party Live.

"I will talk a lot more about my marriage," he added.

Behind the scenes, the Democrats also murmured about O'Rourke's progressive values, saying it remained to be seen whether the former Congressman was as progressive as he would like to introduce himself. They highlight the wealth of the O'Rourke family and the financial contribution their previous campaigns have received from the oil and gas industry.

For example, Democrats say that O'Rourke must clearly indicate his support for the Green New Deal, particularly to clarify his point of view on the situation in which he finds himself.

"We have not heard much of substance yet," added the Democratic strategist.

Democratic strategist Eddie Vale said the question of whether O'Rourke hurt himself with the progressives this week was still "an open question".

"I think there's no way to get those crowds, these donations, there were not a lot of progressives that supported him," Vale said. "There were definitely questions about how he answered questions [and] his family situation. "

"But none of this is fatal, or even a very serious problem," said Vale, adding that "the key is this: what's next?" Will he make his next trips, his next answers, hire staff, start dealing with these topics, or stay open as open-ended questions?

Democratic strategist Basil Smikle also added: "None of his political positions at the moment are disqualifying in a cluttered primary."

"As long as he continues to raise funds, he will have the resources to convince voters of his position and convince them of his viability," said Smikle.

Despite fundraising and grassroots efforts being put aside, O'Rourke will have to "fill the gaps to show he has what it takes to be a candidate in an extremely varied and successful field," Vale said. .

"It is essential that he begins to present his political views at once so that people know what he believes and can follow the innovative and ambitious ideas already put forward by other candidates," he said. he declared.

But, aside from the fact that the Democratic Party needs a new face, the strategist said: "He'll have to show that he is a candidate for this particular moment and I can not say for the moment. moment that he passed the test. "

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