VIDEO EXCLUSIVE: Texas Senate Candidate Beto O’Rourke On How Trump Administration Is Dividing America
Texas Democratic Senate candidate Beto O’Rourke thinks Donald Trump’s policies are diving America – and he didn’t hold back in an exclusive interview with uPolitics.com.
O’Rourke, 46, is a congressman representing Texas’s 16th district. He is running this year against incumbent Republican Sen. Ted Cruz.
The young lawmaker discussed what his greatest concerns about President Donald Trump‘s administration are.
“I’m most concerned about the fact that for 230 years, imperfectly — sometimes frustratingly slow — we’ve been able to be the inspiration for the world and continued to perfect this democracy,” said O’Rourke. “[We’ve been able to] bring more people in, give more people a chance to determine our shared future in fate.”
He continued, criticizing Trump’s attacks on the First Amendment, open immigration and other bastions of American democracy: “When you have a president who calls the press ‘the enemy of the people,’ instead of the best defense against tyranny,” O’Rourke said. “Someone who derides members of Congress who do not applaud his speech at the State of the Union as being ‘traitors to the country,’ when we know that the maximum penalty for treason in this country is death, when he’s someone who advocates for walls to keep out Mexicans who he says will rape and kill us, when he wants to ban all Muslims, all people of one religion from the shores of a country, this experiment that is America, this idea that is the United States could end.”
“We could lose it forever, so it’s going to be up to all of us — regardless of party or background, whether we voted for Trump or not — to make sure that we hold onto this and we make it bigger and better and ensure that it works for all of us,” he added. “That is our test at this moment.”
O’Rourke added that he wants to ensure that Texas “leads the way” to a “promising path” for the U.S. that strives to maintain all of these democratic ideals.
O’Rourke — who was endorsed by conservative newspaper The Houston Chronicle and who has said he would be in favor of impeaching Trump should he be elected senator — faced off against Cruz in a debate last week. According to a poll from the New York Times earlier this month, Cruz leads the race by eight points. O’Rourke is hoping to become Texas’s first Democratic Sen. in 24 years.
In a viral video earlier this year, O’Rourke explained in a detailed speech why he supports NFL players kneeling for the national anthem, a move that has drawn the ire of many conservatives. The Texas congressman cited historical examples of nonviolent protests and resistance efforts like the civil rights movement, and ended his remarks by saying: “I can think of nothing more American than to peacefully stand up or take a knee for your rights anytime, anywhere, anyplace.” The comments received loud applause.