Former Texas Senate candidate Rep. Beto O’Rourke told reporters he has not ruled out running for President in 2020, according to The Washington Post, despite previously saying he would not run.
“Amy and I made a decision not to rule anything out,” O’Rourke told reporters at a town hall meeting in El Paso, Texas, Monday.
The Texas representative will be leaving Congress after three terms as a representative and a loss at the polls in the midterm elections.
O’Rourke was defeated by incumbent Republican Senator Ted Cruz, who has served in that position since 2013.
Forty-six-year-old O’Rourke has been compared to former President Barack Obama, who also had relatively few years of political experience before he was elected president in 2008.
On the day after the midterm elections, O’Rourke’s only message to his followers on Twitter was to tell them “thank you” for their support during his election campaign.
“We just want to say thank you to everyone who made this possible. Everyone who made us feel hopeful, everyone who inspired us,” O’Rourke tweeted.
“Everyone who became the most amazing campaign we could have ever hoped to belong to. Grateful that we got to do this with you. We love you. Goodnight!”
We just want to say thank you to everyone who made this possible. Everyone who made us feel hopeful, everyone who inspired us. Everyone who became the most amazing campaign we could have ever hoped to belong to. Grateful that we got to do this with you. We love you. Goodnight! pic.twitter.com/1j6JnhtP0f
— Beto O’Rourke (@BetoORourke) November 7, 2018
The Post reported that many of those who attended the town hall event on Monday consider O’Rourke a potential 2020 candidate.
“We want to see the next step because we want to be a part of it,” said Martha Morales, an attendee from El Paso. “We want him to be president.”
“He’s the next Obama, and we weren’t allowed to say that,” said a volunteer from O’Rourke’s campaign who was at the event.
According to O’Rourke’s wife, the potential candidate has not spoken to a strategist about running in 2020.
“I don’t know. To me that just seems like you have to give up so much,” Amy O’Rourke said of her husband’s potential presidential campaign.
“I don’t know if this is a line that I or we really want to cross.”
While in the home stretch of his Senate campaign, O’Rourke told “60 Minutes” that he would not run for president in 2020, no matter how the election turned out.
“Win or lose, I’m not—I’m not running in, in 2020,” O’Rourke said according to the post.
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