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He might realize he can't skip a step
Former congressman Beto O'Rourke may be backing off his presidential aspirations, as he is reportedly considering another run at a Senate seat in 2020, according to The Hill.
O'Rourke, a former U.S. representative from El Paso, Texas, lost the 2018 Texas Senate election to incumbent Sen. Ted Cruz in November, leading some to question whether someone can have a reasonable chance at the presidency coming off a loss in a congressional election.
Texas Republican Sen. John Cornyn is up for reelection in 2020, which gives O'Rourke another shot at the Senate if he chooses that path. Politico reported that O'Rourke met with Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer about a potential Senate run.
"I'm trying to figure out how I can best serve this country—where I can do the greatest good for the United States of America," O'Rourke said. "So, yeah, I'm thinking through that and it, you know, may involve running for the presidency. It may involve something else."
Some Texas Democrats view Cornyn as more vulnerable than Cruz was, citing his lower popularity level within the Republican Party.
"The consensus is that if he does run for Senate, he has a good chance of winning," said Gilberto Hinojosa, the Texas Democratic Party chairman.
O'Rourke told Oprah Winfrey that he plans to decide whether or not to enter the Democratic presidential primary by the end of February, although he has also left the door open for more delay by telling CNN on Tuesday "I won't be limited by, you know, the end of this month. But I expect to be able to get a decision by the end of this month."
O'Rourke has expressed hesitancy to jump right back into a political race after the 2018 run, citing the strain it placed on his family. However, it now appears that one way or another O'Rourke will be a significant player on the 2020 stage.
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