Castro looking at 21st century “Marshall Plan”

Julian Castro speaks to the those in attendance at the Keokuk Labor Temple on Monday. Photo by Colin Magnesun/PCC

BY COLIN MAGNESUN
RADIO KEOKUK NEWS DIRECTOR

KEOKUK – “One Nation. One Destiny”

That has been Julian Castro’s campaign slogan since he announced in January of 2019 that he would be entering the crowded list of Democrats looking to oust Republican Donald Trump from the White House come next November.

That motto carried through much of Castro’s hour and a half long speech to roughly 120 Lee County Democrats and interested citizens when the former San Antonio Mayor and Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Director visited Keokuk Monday. The 44-year-old touted many of the platforms that have been a mainstay of the 20 plus Democrats who have thrown their hats in the ring while he spoke to the assembled group at the Keokuk Labor Temple.

Castro spoke at length about topics that have been prevalent early in the campaign season including: Reduced or Free Tuition for Higher Education; Medicare for All Healthcare Reform; Criminal Justice Reform; Legalizing Marijuana; Police Reform and Re-Training; Passage of the Equal Rights Amendment; Passage of the Equality Act; Investment in Infrastucture; Raising the Minimum Wage; Strengthening Union; Drafting Legislation to Combat Climate Change Including Net Zero Carbon Emissions by 2050; and Immigration Reform Including Breaking Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Into Separate Departments

The topic of Immigration Reform consumed much of Castro’s time with the microphone as he outlined a plan to invest the money that Donald Trump has looked to secure for the border wall and investing it into the countries from which immigrants are currently flooding the border from.

His “21st Century Marshall Plan” as he called it, would be combined with efforts to expedite the legal immigration process by adding more courts and judges to process applications and asylum claims.

The topic of Immigration Reform consumed much of Castro’s time with the microphone as he outlined a plan to invest the money that Donald Trump has looked to secure for the border wall and investing it into the countries from which immigrants are currently flooding the border from. His “21st Century Marshall Plan” as he called it, would be combined with efforts to expedite the legal immigration process by adding more courts and judges to process applications and asylum claims.

One thing that separated Castro from previous visitors to Iowa is that he did not spend the majority of his time talking about Donald Trump. Through the first half hour of his speech, he only referred to the “Office of the President” as it is currently inhabited on a few occasions.

That’s not to say Castro did not voice his displeasure with the current inhabitant of the White House.

“Let me just say that I don’t want to make our country anything ‘Again’. I want to make us better than we’ve ever been,” Castro said. “

“I don’t want to go backwards. I want to go into the future stronger than ever….. With one exception which is that I want to return integrity and decency to the Oval Office.”

After taking questions from the crowd, Castro took time to meet with just over half of the more than 100 people in attendance before exiting the Keokuk Labor Temple.

Julian Castro currently sits in a tie for 8th place among Democratic nomination hopefuls as a NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll showed 1% of Democratic-leaning voters favored the former HUD Secretary.

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