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Former U.S. Rep. Beto O’Rourke, who gained a national following in his 2018 midterm race for Senate against Ted Cruz, has joined the crowded field of candidates vying to become the Democrats’ 2020 presidential nominee.

O’Rourke announced his decision early Thursday morning, saying in a campaign video, “This is going to be a positive campaign that seeks to bring out the very best from every single one of us, that seeks to unite a very divided country.”

The Democrat from El Paso is visiting Iowa Thursday for the first official stops of his campaign. Before he left, he spoke with NBC 5 political reporter Julie Fine, telling her that he and his family had mulled their future together, and that of the country.

“When we looked out at that, there is no sitting on the sidelines, there is no hoping that somebody else can get this done,” O’Rourke said.

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