Former Rep. Beto O'Rourke takes the stage for the start of the 2020 Democratic U.S. presidential debate in Houston, Texas,...

Democrats nominate Beto O’Rourke to run for Texas governor

EL PASO — Democrats have officially made Beto O’Rourke their nominee for Texas governor and latest hope of ending decades of losses in the nation’s biggest red state.

O’Rourke had no serious primary competition and has spent the early months of his campaign trying to regain his footing in Texas after his run for president in 2020 soured some of his supporters back home.

No Democrat has won statewide office in Texas in nearly 30 years. O’Rourke came close in 2018 when his narrow loss for a U.S. Senate seat made him a party phenomenon. But that energy didn’t last after joining a crowded field of Democrats vying the White House.

So far, O’Rourke has shown he can still quickly raise millions of dollars and draw a crowd. But he has also been pressed on liberal positions he took during his run for president, none more famous than his “Hell yes, we’re going to take your AR-15.”

Last month, O’Rourke said during a campaign stop in East Texas that he “wasn’t interested in taking anything away from anyone” but has continued to say assault weapons shouldn’t be on the streets.

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