Former CIA Director John Brennan Endorses Beto O’Rourke in Texas

John Brennan and Beto O'Rourke
LAURA BUCKMAN/AFP/Getty Images/Drew Angerer/Getty Images/

Former CIA director John Brennan endorsed prospective Texas senator Beto O’Rourke via Twitter on Friday morning.

“As a former resident of Texas and a proud UT-Austin alumnus,” John Brennan said, “I believe Beto O’Rourke is the type of individual Texans need in the U.S. Senate to represent their best interests. He has the integrity, intellect, and character that is in short supply in Congress. Vote!”

Brennan has said that “as the child of an immigrant,” he will “vote for candidates who believe in America living up to its values & remaining the world’s melting pot.” Brennan said that he wants “individuals who are honest, have integrity, reject inflammatory rhetoric & want to bring us together,” and he urged citizens to “vote [their] conscience!”

It is the self-described “nonpartisan” Obama-era CIA director’s first open endorsement of a political candidate but the latest in a long line of gestures in opposition to President Donald Trump. In August 2018, Trump responded by revoking Brennan’s security clearance.

At the University of Texas in October, Brennan said: “Donald Trump has not helped to encourage the type of civil discourse and public engagement, and his rhetoric too frequently, I think, fuels these feelings and sentiments that now are bleeding over into potentially acts of violence.”

Incumbent senator Ted Cruz and newcomer Beto O’Rourke are having a knock-down, drag-out fight for the Texas seat. Just days before the ballots come in, polls suggest the race is too close to call. Nonpartisan Cook Political Report calls the race a “toss-up.”

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