by Katrina Hapner, contributing writer for Telegraph Local
One of the democratic candidates making a bid for President, Julian Castro, has decided to end his campaign. Castro, the only Latino candidate, commented on Twitter that his campaign had “stood up for the most vulnerable people” and had “given a voice to those who are often forgotten.” Castro went on to say, “It’s with profound gratitude to all of our supporters that I suspend my campaign for president today. I’m so proud of everything we’ve accomplished together. I’m going to keep fighting for an America where everyone counts—I hope you’ll join me in that fight.
Castro was one of the first candidates to announce his bid in January of 2019. During the Obama administration he served as secretary of housing and urban development. Prior to that he was the mayor of San Antonio, Texas. During his bid for president, Castro seemed to struggle to stand out among the rest of the numerous democratic candidates, and never gained much in national or state polls. He did not even qualify for the Democratic debates in November and December.
It may be that his campaign policies did help him stand out a bit more. His campaign was based on being the first Democratic presidential candidate who wanted immigration reform and an end to hunger. He stood for decriminalizing illegal border crossings, and was the first to do so as other candidates soon followed. However, he also was vocal about his criticism of the Democratic Party as a whole, regarding the way the Democratic Nominee is chosen. In a town hall meeting in Iowa, he said, “I don’t believe the two states that start the process — Iowa and New Hampshire — are reflective of the diversity of the country, or of our party.”
Castro spoke a lot about having the support of his family, specifically his mother, and also his twin brother Joaquin Castro, who has a seat in the house. His mother, Rosie Castro is a Mexican-American civil rights activist. In early October, Ms. Castro was interviewed by The Washington Post and stated that it was her opinion that her son was not doing well at the polls due to the way he was portrayed in media coverage. She stated, “There was no respect, if you will. It’s just the way that he’s talked about sometimes makes you feel like they just don’t get it, you know, that they have not been around minorities enough to be able to have a sense for — we can also create, we can also lead.”
Castro has also been vocal in criticism on President Trump, stating during an NPR Politics Podcast that, “What he’s trying to do is, he’s trying to split people along racial and ethnic and religious lines.” He went on to add that he felt like Trump’s specialty was being divisive and that he is the biggest “identity politician” that has been seen in the last 50 years. Castro’s departure is just the latest candidate of color to drop out of the democratic field, that started out as very historically diverse.