When Julián Castro attended a meeting at The White House in 2009 as the 35-year old mayor of San Antonio, Texas, former President Obama looked down the table at him and said “I thought he was on our staff. I thought he was an intern. This guy’s a mayor?”

He sure was. And then, Castro went on to become the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development under Obama.

Back in 2015, a National Journal profile described him this way:

But the spotlight shines most intensely on Julián, the San Antonio mayor who vaulted into the national consciousness with his keynote address—the first by a Latino—at the 2012 Democratic National Convention. Last year, when Julián left the mayor’s job to join Obama’s Cabinet as Housing and Urban Development secretary, the move stirred widespread speculation that he was being positioned as a potential 2016 vice presidential pick for likely nominee Hillary Clinton. Barring that, Texas Democrats have long envisioned Julián—or maybe Joaquin [Castro, his twin brother]?—as the state’s first Latino governor. Or as a U.S. senator. Or maybe both.

Now, he and his twin brother Joaquin (who, by the way, is a member of the House of Representatives), are campaigning for upstart Texas Senate candidate Beto O’Rourke, who is running against incumbent Ted Cruz. Castro has also started a political action committee called “Opportunity First.”

Castro’s political career — which began when he was elected to the San Antonio City Council at only 26 years old — and his latest moves seem to be setting the stage for another major development.

So…will he run for president in 2020?

Has he given a speech at the Iowa State Fair, one good way to tell if a politician is probing a presidential run? Check.

Has he written a memoir about his humble beginnings? Check.

The book is called “An Unlikely Journey: Waking Up From My American Dream.”

Julián Castro joins us to talk about his famous family, his future political plans and whether a Democrat can actually win in Texas.

Produced by Denise Couture. Text by Gabrielle Healy.


  • Julián Castro Former secretary, Department of Housing and Urban Development; former mayor, San Antonio; author of "An Unlikely Journey: Waking Up from My American Dream"; @JulianCastro

Read An Excerpt Of Julián Castro's Book, "An Unlikely Journey"

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