Just as the new year is beginning, Julian Castro has dropped out of the Democratic presidential nomination race. He was the only Latino running for the nomination, leaving only Cory Booker and Andrew Yang as the only viable non-Caucasian candidates left in the race. Deval Patrick entered late and hasn’t made a dent in the polls. Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, Pete Buttigieg, Amy Klobuchar, Tom Steyer, and Michael Bloomberg are all white.
It’s a far cry from the 2016 primaries when the robust Republican field featured Ben Carson, Ted Cruz, and Marco Rubio among the top five finishers. Cruz and Rubio are both Latino.
What does this say about the Democratic Party? In their efforts to include as many candidates as possible following their 2016 all-Caucasian primaries, they diluted the field as they embraced six white candidates and an Asian-American in the last debate. Even then, Yang was the final candidate to qualify, preventing an “All-White Christmas” debate.
Castro’s departure was expected soon. He barely met his fundraising goals last quarter. With numbers coming out for the major candidates, Castro’s team likely looked at their numbers, which were considerably lower, and realized the fight was over. The video the he Tweeted to announce his withdrawal highlighted his push for immigration reform, a subject that has not polled well for Democrats despite a rabid progressive base pushing for open borders.
It’s with profound gratitude to all of our supporters that I suspend my campaign for president today.
I’m so proud of everything we’ve accomplished together. I’m going to keep fighting for an America where everyone counts—I hope you’ll join me in that fight. pic.twitter.com/jXQLJa3AdC
— Julián Castro (@JulianCastro) January 2, 2020
Though Castro didn’t register very high in many polls, the other candidates will scramble to fill the small void. They’ll appeal to Castro’s message in the immediate future, one that denounced criminalizing illegal border crossing and holding tactics used by the Obama and Trump administrations.
With Julian Castro out, that leaves Cory Booker and Andrew Yang as the only POCs.
Elizabeth Warren's campaign labeled Asian-Americans as "Caucasian" so by here standards, there's only one left.
Noteworthy: Of the final 5 @GOP candidates in 2016, 3 were POCs. Two were Latino.
— JD Rucker (@JDRucker) January 2, 2020
The Democratic field gets paler every month. Julian Castro is out. Cory Booker is likely on his last campaign breath. Andrew Yang will soon be the only person of color in the race (though Elizabeth Warren considers Asian-Americans to be Caucasians).
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JD Rucker – EIC