At home, Julián Castro’s been spending more time reading and watching television in Spanish, trying to get his speaking skills up to speed.
On the job as Housing and Urban Development Secretary, he’s been carefully working the levers in Washington, with coaching from Bill Clinton and a twin brother who’s a popular and up-and-coming congressman himself.
Starting Saturday, he’ll be out on the trail for Hillary Clinton in in Nevada, Iowa and Maine.
Here’s the story in Politico:
He’s plotted his rise carefully, studying and strategizing with a clear goal in sight. But if Clinton picks him to be her running mate, it’ll be more about perfectly fitting his party’s moment and the nearly non-existent Democratic bench than about his 18 months as a HUD secretary who hasn’t left a deep mark at his agency, the White House or the housing world.
Castro’s got a made-for-campaign commercials biography, and an undeniable savvy that’s helped him spin a job as a part-time mayor of San Antonio into an unusually successful 2012 Democratic convention keynote and then the answer to the second term Obama White House’s own search for more diversity in the Cabinet, without having to wait until he could win statewide in Texas.
Castro’s a young-looking 41, a lower-level Cabinet secretary with a record that’s most distinguished for not having anything go wrong. He’s the former mayor of the seventh-largest city with a record that includes a big win in implementing universal pre-K, but the job is technically part-time and pays only $3,000 per year. (Most of the municipal government is run by an unelected city manager, though many San Antonians expect the mayor to act like they’re full-time.)
So here’s a guy who didn’t want a job with Homeland Security, because he had no national security or law enforcement experience. He didn’t want to be Transportation Secretary, although intrigued by travel, because he didn’t want to be talking up the Highway Bill. But now, he’s asked to be VP and…he figures that job is not beneath him.
Well, guess what? That job may be beneath him, especially with all the trouble that Hillary’s in. Maybe he figures by running as Hillary’s VP…it’s really a “streamline” to the Presidency. I guess we will find out soon enough, won’t we?
Please excuse while I go brush up on my Spanish on Duolingo. Maybe some day I too, will run as a VP.
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