The 2020 Candidates: Beto O'Rourke
Democratic presidential candidate Beto O'Rourke sat down with The Washington Post Live Wednesday, Oct. 23 as part of The 2020 Candidates series. O’Rourke discussed why he’s made gun control the centerpiece of his campaign and his views on immigration.
The Washington Post Live's one-on-one interview series The 2020 Candidates features the men and women running for president as they make their case on key issues and how they hope to set themselves apart from a crowded field. Washington Post National political reporter Robert Costa is the moderator of The 2020 Candidates series.
Democratic presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke said Oct. 23 that President Trump’s tweet comparing the impeachment inquiry to a ‘lynching’ proves he’s ‘unfit to lead this country.’ When asked if he accepted former VP Joe Biden’s apology for using the same terminology 21 years ago in reference to the Clinton impeachment process, O’Rourke says, “I do…Nothing about the fact that he did this 21 years ago makes what the president is doing now OK. I think Vice President Biden was right to apologize and right to condemn President Trump for what he’s doing.”
  • Oct 23
Democratic candidate Beto O’Rourke compared President Trump’s rhetoric toward Muslims to that of the Third Reich, saying, ‘Outside of the Third Reich give me another example of a western leader who has called one people of one faith inherently defective or dangerous and disqualified of being successful in that country’
  • Oct 23
Democratic candidate Beto O’Rourke has proposed a mandatory gun buyback for assault weapons like AR-15s and AK-47s, sparking concerns that such a law would result in law enforcement officers going door-to-door to enforce the law. O’Rourke says he would institute a law if elected and would rely on the American people to do what’s right. ‘Just like with any law we expect our fellow Americans to follow the law.’
  • Oct 23
When asked about his call to deny religious or academic institutions tax-exempt status if they oppose “full civil rights and full human rights” based on sexual orientation or gender identity, Democratic candidate Beto O’Rourke says, “We should all be able to worship as we see fit…But the moment that any of us provides any service in the public sphere…then we are subject to the laws and the values and the constitution of the United States.”
  • Oct 23
When asked whether he supports the protesters in Hong Kong, Democratic candidate Beto O’Rourke answered definitively, “Yes.’ ‘Human rights is a fundamental value and concern of the United States.’
  • Oct 23
When asked if he would send U.S. troops back into Syria, Democratic candidate Beto O’Rourke called the situation difficult. ‘I don’t know if we can reinsert ourselves…I don’t know that you can get these horses back into the stable again.”
  • Oct 23
Beto O'Rourke
Democratic Presidential Candidate
Beto O’Rourke is a fourth-generation Texan, born and raised in El Paso. After graduating from Columbia University with a degree in English Literature, Beto returned home and started a small technology business that would grow to bring dozens of high-wage, high-skill jobs to the border community. He ran for the El Paso City Council in 2005 and upon being elected became one of the youngest members to ever sit on the council. Beto served two terms before running for U.S. Congress in 2012, taking on a 16-year incumbent and winning. He personally knocked on thousands of doors and held public forums with voters in both Spanish and English. In March of 2017, Beto launched a historic 19-month campaign to represent all 28 million Texans in the U.S. Senate. Running the largest grassroots campaign the state had ever seen, he rejected all money from political action committees and personally visited each one of the 254 counties of Texas as he held over 350 town hall discussions. Beto ultimately received more votes than any Democrat in Texas history as he excited thousands of first-time voters to go to the polls. Beto is married to Amy, and they are raising their three children -- Ulysses, Molly, and Henry -- in El Paso.
Interviewed by Robert Costa
The Washington Post
About Washington Post Live
Washington Post Live is the newsroom’s live journalism platform. Top-level government and business leaders, emerging voices and newsmakers discuss the most pressing national and global issues of the day.