Written by Sean Anchondo
Like a Rockstar, an anxious crowd of onlookers bursts into cheers as the El Paso Congressman, Beto O’Rourke, takes the stage. With sleeves rolled up and tie slightly pulled ajar, O’Rourke was set to deliver his message. He spoke with a sense of purpose, preaching togetherness and hope. The audience chomping at the bit.
Beginning at midnight, a packed venue was clamoring for photos with the U.S. Senate hopeful. After a rousing speech, Austinites of all ages stayed to take pictures with the candidate, despite it being in the wee hours of the morning.
Starting off, just 18-hours earlier, O’Rourke ended his night with one more speech at the Kerbey Lane restaurant right off the University of Texas Campus. Greeted with a near capacity restaurant, supporters anxiously waited to hear O’Rourke speak or to just take pictures.
After the event, O’Rourke said he was very “encouraged” and “grateful” by the outcome and support of all the events.
In Houston, O’Rourke was greeted with a rock and roll show and a huge turnout. He’s hosted town halls in a variety of places like Lubbock and Sugarland.
“Do more of the listening, and less of the talking,” O’Rourke says.
In the town hall format, O’Rourke has been able to hear many of the issues that are consistent around the state. Residents of the panhandle, Beaumont and Austin speak on health-related issues.
“[People want] healthcare and the ability to see a doctor,” says O’Rourke. ”
Manny Texans are buying into his message.
Currently, Beto O’Rourke is outraising incumbent Senator Ted Cruz. The campaign has raised about $2.4 million in the last few months. O’Rourke has made it clear he is not taking PAC (Political Action Committee) money, as to be seen as an authentic and a transparent representative.
Many young people have been deeply involved with this campaign, due to having access to the politician via social media. This has contributed to the large turnouts at the town halls throughout the state and other events. Donations to his website BetoforTexas.com is gaining steam as the election day nears.
Many see O’Rourke having a tough road ahead. A Democrat hasn’t won a Senate seat since 1994. The senate race in Texas in November is crucial if the Democrats want to flip the Senate this fall. Young Democratic Texan voters could cause the biggest upset in the upcoming Senate race.