2020 Democratic Presidential Field Tests Hispanic Caucus
There has been a relative silence among members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus (CHC) considering the candidacy of former HUD Secretary Julián Castro. His twin brother Congressman Joaquín Castro (D-TX) has endorsed his candidacy but no other CHC member has publicly endorsed the former San Antonio Mayor. Complicating matters is that three-quarters of the CHC’s 38-member delegation hails from California, Texas, New York, or New Jersey -- and each of those states already has a high-profile declared candidate. NJ Democratic Senator Bob Menéndez has endorsed his home state colleague Senator Cory Booker, andCongresswoman Nanette Diaz Barragán (D-CA) has come out in support of Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA). Another explanation is that members are waiting for further clarification on who will jump into the race. A few high-profile candidates including former TX Congressman Beto O’Rourke -- who many CHC members supported during his unsuccessful bid to unseat Republican Senator Ted Cruz -- and former VP Joe Biden are still mulling possible White House runs. High-profile Latinx electeds across the country -- including Senator Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV),Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), CA AG Xavier Becerra, and NM Governor Michelle Luján Grisham -- could be powerful surrogates on the campaign trail, and their endorsements will be highly sought. Still, it is possible that Democratic candidates have simply not reached out to much of the Caucus. Politicoreports that neither Castro brother has lobbied CHC members hard for their backing. "A lot of people are keeping their powder dry, and why wouldn’t they? First of all, not everybody has gotten into this race,” Castro said in an interview with the outlet. “At the end of the day, if we fast-forward six months from now, I’m confident I’ll have support from many CHC members and many others well before voting begins a year from now.” Congressman Lou Correa (D-CA) said that while Harris gave him a heads up about her candidacy -- though she did not press for an endorsement -- no other candidate has reached out to him. “I’m low on the totem pole, I guess,” he said. More here.