On The Trail With Julian Castro: Division is Trump's 'Specialty'

Jul 23, 2019

Julian Castro during a campaign event in July at Nashua Community College.
Credit Jason Moon / NHPR

Former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julian Castro, the former mayor of San Antonio, Texas, was on the short-list to be Hillary Clinton's running mate four years ago. He is working to position himself as a candidate suited to challenge President Trump.

"What he's trying to do is, he's trying to split people along racial, and ethnic and religious lines. His specialty, if you will, in politics is division.  Trying to just amp up a base. He's the biggest identity politician that we've had over the last 50 years."

To defeat President Trump, the Democrats need to build diverse coalitions, he says. Castro was interviewed on the NPR Politics Podcast with NPR's Scott Detrow and NHPR's Lauren Chooljian during a stop at Gibson's Bookstore in Concord. 

After a break-out performance in the first debate, Castro is trying to build momentum. He says in the interview that he himself thought he would get more of a bounce in the post-debate polls.

"I will say, every time I talk to someone about him they bring up the same thing," Chooljian said. "They are like, 'Oh, did you see him on the debates? He was excellent.' And so it's kind of a similar way that I feel like the country is looking at him right now, where they feel like he had a big moment in those debates and now he is worth a second look."

Listen to this NPR Politics Podcast in full above, or right here.