Former Texas Congressman Beto O’Rourke (D.) was slammed on Friday for not endorsing Gina Ortiz-Jones, a Democratic congressional candidate who narrowly lost to incumbent Rep. Will Hurd (R., Texas).
O’Rourke made a campaign stop at a New Hampshire living room, where he was pressed by Deb Nelson, chairwoman of the Upper Valley Democrats of New Hampshire, about why he “refused to endorse” Ortiz-Jones last year, the Washington Examiner reported.
O’Rourke, one of over twenty Democrats running for president, responded by saying Hurd is “a good friend of mine” and “someone who as a member of Congress, representing El Paso, I was able to work with.”
“When we prioritize our elections and our political careers over the ability to get something done when we get the chance, then I believe we defraud those that we represent. That’s the way that I felt,” O’Rourke said. “I faced my constituents every single month, and I wasn’t going to come back and say, ‘you know what, I’m no longer working with somebody in the majority who’s going to help me get this done because I want to get Republicans out and Democrats in.’”
“That friendship, our working relationship, took precedence over supporting Gina Ortiz-Jones. And I can tell that it disappoints you, and I’m sorry,” O’Rourke said.
Nelson was not satisfied with O’Rourke’s response, saying that his endorsement could have helped Ortiz-Jones win the election, adding, “I think party loyalty matters.”
“But it’s not unconditional,” O’Rourke said. “I can’t take a pledge to support every Democrat in the country … I need to know about them first. Would you want me to make a blanket commitment about people I know nothing about, who I’ve never met?”
Following the event, Nelson, a public high school teacher, said she is worried about O’Rourke’s position on not endorsing all Democrats. She said she is still undecided and wouldn’t publicly endorse anybody during the Democratic primary as the chairwoman of the Hanover Democrats, but she said she would still support O’Rourke if he won the nomination, despite his endorsement stance.
“I get friendships, I do,” she told reporters. “But in this day and age, I’ve seen too many instances where somebody befriends a Republican, and legislation that we think is important doesn’t get passed.”
The post O’Rourke Blasted for Not Endorsing Texas Democratic Candidate appeared first on Washington Free Beacon.