SAN ANTONIO (AP)– Assailing President Donald Trump for “a crisis of management,” previous Obama Cabinet member Julian Castro signed up with the 2020 governmental race Saturday as the rush of Democrats making early transfer to challenge the incumbent speeds up.

Castro, who might end up being the only Latino in what is forming up to be a congested Democratic field, made immigration a focal point of his statement in his hometown of San Antonio, less than 200 miles from the U.S.-Mexico border.

Two days after the president visited the border to promote his assured wall, Castro mocked Trump for claiming that the U.S. deals with an “invasion” from its ally to the south. “He called it a nationwide security crisis,” Castro said. “Well, there is a crisis today. It’s a crisis of leadership. Donald Trump has stopped working to promote the worths of our excellent nation.”

Castro, the 44-year-old grandson of a Mexican immigrant, said he was running for president “since it’s time for new management, because it’s time for new energy and it’s time for a new commitment to make certain that the opportunities that I have actually had are offered to every American.”

He made the statement as a federal government shutdown drags into the longest in U.S. history, and as the field of 2020 contenders widens and anticipation grows around bigger names still thinking about runs.

Castro was San Antonio’s mayor for five year and U.S. housing secretary in President Barack Obama’s 2nd term. He ended up being the second Democrat to officially enter race, after former Maryland Rep. John Delaney.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts has actually likewise started an exploratory committee for president, and 4 other Democratic senators are taking stable actions toward running. Hawaii Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, the very first Hindu elected to Congress, stated this week she is planning a bid, too.

Castro is getting an early start in attempting to stand apart. His very first trip as a candidate comes Monday, to hurricane-ravaged Puerto Rico, where an outcry has actually begun as the White House considers diverting catastrophe financing to pay for the wall.

The deadlock over spending for a border wall that Trump made a central part of his 2016 project has caused the partial federal closure. That stalemate, in addition to Trump’s hard-line immigration stands, drew sharp rebukes from Castro.

” There are severe issues that require to be addressed in our broken migration system, however seeking asylum is a legal right. And the cruel policies of this administration are doing genuine and enduring damage,” he said.

He argued for securing the border in a “clever and gentle method.”

” There is no way in hell that caging children is a smart or a right or excellent way to do it. We say no to building a wall and state yes to developing community. We say no to scapegoating immigrants,” he stated.

Signing up with Castro at the campaign kickoff was his twin sibling, Democratic Rep. Joaquin Castro, chairman of the Hispanic congressional caucus and a frequent Trump critic. The Spanish-style plaza in the Castro twins’ boyhood community was packed with supporters who streamed through evictions between a mariachi band. Castro had actually said leading up to his statement that a Latino candidate was a should in the 2020 field.

That group of hopefuls is beginning to take shape even though the first primary elections are more than a year away.

Sen. Kamala Harris of California this past week published a memoir, a staple of governmental candidates. Former Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke is doing little to dim speculation that he may delve into a field that has no clear front-runner.

Castro knows he does not have the name acknowledgment of prospective 2020 competitors or the buzz surrounding O’Rourke, whose flirtations with 2020 have enticed donors and activists after a close race in 2015 versus Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas.

Even some fans at Castro’s announcement could be torn if O’Rourke gets in the race. Diana Delrosario, a social worker in San Antonio, alerted she may sob while she recounted how Castro once headed out of his way as mayor to assist wheel her mom out of a dining establishment.

” I have this heart for Julian. However it’s going to be a big discussion if Beto decides to run,” stated Delrosario, 45.

Castro, who has actually repeatedly dismissed talk that an O’Rourke candidacy would complicate his own possibilities, has framed the area and his upbringing as the story of an underdog.

He was raised by a regional Latina activist, and after a brief profession in law, was chosen mayor of the country’s seventh-largest city at 34. It wasn’t long prior to Democrats nationally welcomed him as a star in the making, especially one from Texas, where a booming Hispanic population is quickly changing the state’s demographics and improving the party’s fortunes.

Castro provided the keynote speech at the 2012 Democratic National Convention. 2 years later on, President Barack Obama picked him to lead the Department of Real Estate and Urban Development.

He was on the list of Hillary Clinton’s possible running mates in 2016. Throughout Castro’s journey this previous week to Nevada, one state Latino magnate told Castro that he need to once again be a top competitor for vice president if his project falls short.

Like other Democrats running, Castro has actually stated he will not accept cash from political action committees tied to corporations and unions, and he has sought to introduce himself to voters as a champ for universal healthcare and inexpensive real estate.

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Follow Paul J. Weber on Twitter: www.twitter.com/pauljweber

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