The former mayor of San Antonio, grandson of Mexican immigrants, has announced his candidacy for the Democratic nomination for the US presidential election of 2020.
The former mayor of San Antonio, grandson of Mexican immigrants, has announced his candidacy for the Democratic nomination for the US presidential election of 2020. SUZANNE CORDEIRO / AFP

"I am a candidate for the presidency of the United States," said Julian Castro, 44, in front of several hundred supporters gathered in Plaza San Antonio Plaza Guadalupe, the city where he is from, and he was mayor between 2009 and 2014. He becomes the most prominent Democrat to do his official entry into the 2020 presidential race, which is expected to involve diverse and diverse candidates to face Donald Trump.

Under the slogan "One Nation, One Destiny", Julian Castro, who described himself as "an antidote to Donald Trump" in an interview with NBC, said his opposition to the current Conservative president. "We say no to building the wall and yes to building communities"he told the crowd, while Trump is still asking for $ 5.7 billion to finance the construction of a wall on the border with Mexico, which caused disagreement with the Democrats and led to The longest shutdown in the history of the country. A project he considers to be a "Silly way to use our resources," repeating that "We do not need a wall"

Aged 44, grandson of a Mexican cleaning lady, Castro does not hesitate to invoke the course of his family – "My story is that of an immigrant" – to oppose the policy of the current President of the United States. Julian Castro's grandmother arrived from Mexico at the age of six in the 1920s, and her own mother, Rosie Castro, was an activist in the civil rights struggle of the "Chicanos", the Americans. Latin origin. Julian Castro and his twin brother Joaquin both studied at prestigious Stanford and Harvard universities.

The youngest member of the San Antonio City Council, elected at the age of 26 in 2001, he then took the leadership of the Texas metropolis of 1.3 million in 2009 and was reelected comfortably in 2011 with 81% votes.

A rising star hailed in 2012

It is presented as "The rising star of the Democratic Party" at the 2012 convention where he made a speech noticed as keynote speaker, with ease reminiscent of Barack Obama, eight years ago. This "Latin Obama" becomes the youngest member of the democratic government in 2014 as Secretary of State for Housing and Urban Development until 2017.

Read also Rising star Julian Castro joins the Obama administration

His brother Joaquim, who looks like him in a troubling way, follows his steps in politics, since he himself was elected representative of Texas in 2003, then to the United States House of Representatives in 2013, where he is also a fierce opponent of Donald Trump.

The name of Joaquin Castro was evoked to form a ticket with Hillary Clinton during the 2016 presidential election, but it is finally Tim Kaine who was appointed. His candidacy could revive enthusiasm for Democrats among Hispanic voters, who supported Hillary Clinton, but to a lesser extent than Barack Obama. But the race promises to be tight even as it may have to face several big figures of the Democratic Party, like Elizabeth Warren, Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, Kamala Harris, and even a rival from Texas, Beto O'Rourke, who is made known by facing Republican Senator Ted Cruz. Congressman Tulsi Gabbard, a Hawaiian Democrat, announced at the age of just 37 that she will also be in the running.

"I'm not the favorite, admits the Latin candidate on NBC. But you know, I think I can not remember a single moment in my life where I was the favorite. "

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