The high-profile Democratic candidate Beto O’Rourke announced he’s running for governor of Texas. This long-anticipated campaign for governor is no surprise after his previous bids for the U.S. Senate and president in 2020.

As a congressman from El Paso, O’Rourke ran for the U.S. Senate Texas seat four years ago, challenging Republican incumbent Ted Cruz. Upon his loss, he remained committed to Texas and became a presidential candidate in 2020.

Despite his second failed political attempt, he wasted little time after his presidential bid and returned to Texas politics. He was encouraged to challenge the U.S. Sen. John Cornyn but instead launched a political action committee (PAC) in support of Texas Democrats in the 2020 election. 

Today, as a high-profile Democratic candidate, O’Rourke is challenging long-standing incumbent Republican governor, Greg Abbott, a conservative governor focused on divisive politics and extremist policies on abortion, gun rights, immigration and schools. Abbott has made building a state-funded border wall a key part of his campaign, something O’Rourke also calls “extremist.”

Now, O’Rourke is in pursuit of uniting and listening to Texans such as educators, frontline workers, entrepreneurs, energy leaders — “all those who’ve stepped up for Texas in the absence of state leadership.

O’Rourke’s campaign is committed to eliminating the divisive politics that continue to dominate Texas today and create a more united Texas. By creating high-quality jobs, expanding access to healthcare and providing an equitable and attainable quality education for every Texan, O’Rourke is prioritizing all Texans and seeks to “get back to the big, bold vision that used to define Texas. A Texas big enough for all of us.” 

His campaign priorities come not long after various demonstrations of failed leadership present in Texas today.  After the electricity grid failed earlier this year in February 2021 while Ted Cruz was in Cancun, Texans were left without power and leadership.

With a shifting political landscape and desire for new leadership that prioritizes everyday, working-class communities, Texans have been waiting for leadership and are ready for change in the nation’s most Republican state.