Texas Castro Twins Campaign, Details to Come

Image: Texas Castro Twins Campaign, Details to Come San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro and his brother Joaquin Castro, right, wave to the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C.

Wednesday, 16 Apr 2014 11:42 AM

By Sharon Churcher

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San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro and his identical twin brother, Texas Democrat Rep. Joaquin Castro both are campaigning. The offices they'll seek will be decided later, The New York Times reported.

The mayor said that even though he faced off in a televised debate on Tuesday against a Republican candidate for Texas lieutenant governor, he is not running for that position nor, at this point, for any higher office.

"Sometimes I get impatient," said the 39-year-old mayor told the Times. "And I figure I have nothing else going on, so I might as well [campaign]."

Ever since Julian became the first Latino to give a Democratic National Convention keynote address in 2012, the fiercely ambitious pair have sought ways to stay on the national radar.

There has been speculation that the mayor is angling for the vice presidential spot on the 2016 Democratic ticket and that his brother is positioning himself to challenge Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, the Republican Tea Party hero, in 2018.

But though Joaquin is holding a $2,500-a-head fund-raiser next week, with his brother listed as the "special guest," the congressman says he has not decided on whether to go up against Cruz.

"Democrats have to put up somebody strong in 2018 in that Senate race," he said, according to the Times, "whether it will be me or not."

The International Business Times in 2012 reported predictions that Julian will be the first Hispanic president.

But some Democrats are concerned that despite being brought up in a Mexican-American family and graduating from Stanford University and Harvard Law School, neither twin speaks Spanish.

"Nationally, to have greater appeal, they need to work on their Spanish," Sergio Bendixen, a pollster who has been employed by both men, told the Times.

On at least one occasion, their identical looks have proved to be a setback. In 2005, during Julian’s unsuccessful first mayoral run, he became mired in a "Twin-Gate Scandal" amid claims that he had Joaquin fill in for him at a campaign event. Julian demurred that this was unintentional confusion. Spectators at the annual San Antonio river parade mistook Joaquin for him when his brother rode a barge with city council members.

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