Beto O’Rourke Jumps Into Crowded Democratic Race for PresidentThe former Texas congressman narrowly lost the Senate contest to Republican Ted Cruz in 2018 but managed to build a nationwide following with his unconventional and optimistic style combined with a populist message that brought in almost $80 million in mostly small donations. O’Rourke announced his run via a video announcement, skipping the traditional set piece speech in his home state and foreshadowing an unconventional approach to the campaign. “I’m running to serve you as the next president of the United States of America,” O’Rourke said in the video released Thursday morning.