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Democrat Beto O'Rourke announces 2020 White House bid

FILE - In this Feb. 5, 2019, photo, former Democratic Texas congressman Beto O'Rourke laughs as he is interviewed by Oprah Winfrey in New York. Photo: AP Photo/Kathy Willens, File. FILE - In this Feb. 5, 2019, photo, former Democratic Texas congressman Beto O'Rourke laughs as he is interviewed by Oprah Winfrey in New York.

March 14, 2019 06:09 AM

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - Former congressman Beto O'Rourke is running for president.

The 46-year-old officially announced his 2020 Democratic primary bid Thursday with an online post. After months of teasing a bid, he's finally, formally hoping to turn buzz from a close loss in Texas' 2018 Senate race into a White House try.

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O'Rourke nearly upset Sen. Ted Cruz. Since then, his blend of Kennedy-esque looks, easygoing charisma and bipartisan optimism has helped his national political star burn brighter.

Democrats have long dreamed that a booming Hispanic population could eventually flip Texas blue and transform the electoral college, making the Republican path to the presidency all but impossible.

O'Rourke's home-state appeal may not prove to be enough to make Texas competitive, however, as the Democrats try to deny President Donald Trump a second term.

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AP

(Copyright 2019 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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