Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Who To Watch In Charlotte

Barack Obama became a political star after his DNC speech 8 years ago, which started him on the path to the White House.  The stars at the 2012 convention hoping that their future is just as bright include the Castro brothers, Joaquin and Julian, as they represent the party's growing Latino influence and political power in Texas.

Civil rights activist Rosie Castro toted her painfully shy twin boys everywhere, and they weren't always thrilled about the outings: distributing political literature, attending farm worker rallies and visiting the voting booth.

But the early introduction into political life made its mark on Julian and Joaquin Castro, who left their hardscrabble San Antonio neighborhood to attend Stanford and Harvard Law School before returning to their native city.

Julian is now mayor of America's seventh-largest city, and Joaquin is a Texas state representative poised to win a seat in Congress. The brothers, 37, will be in the national spotlight Tuesday evening when Julian -- after an introduction by Joaquin -- delivers the keynote address at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, North Carolina, the first Latino to have that honor.

Julian Castro says he'll use the speech to highlight his family story as an example of the American Dream.

"Growing up, when we would get dragged to these events, I didn't want to be there," he said, recalling the outings led by his activist single mother. "Over time, as we got older, I developed a real appreciation of the importance of being involved in the democratic process."

The Castros share a lot of similarities with a certain President of the United States:  raised by a single mother, putting themselves through college, growing up in the labor movement, reaching success in state politics.  Now they turn to bigger things:  Joaquin is aiming for a House seat, and Julian is the keynote speaker.

We'll see how they do.  But remember the names:  you'll be seeing them again in 2016 for sure.

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