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According to The Huffington Post, President Obama has picked Mayor Julian Castro to be the new Secretary of Housing and Urban Development. If confirmed he would replace Shaun Donovan, who is reportedly being tapped to head up the Office of Management Budget, replacing Sylvia Mathews Burwell, who is leaving her position to take over as Secretary of Health and Human Services for the outgoing Kathleen Sebelius.

The most intriguing piece of this shuffle however is Julian Castro. At the age of 39, Castro is currently serving his third two-year term as mayor of San Antonio. Not only has he been a popular mayor, but he has also been seen as a rising star in the Democratic party, delivering the keynote address for President Obama in September 2012 at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, North Carolina.

I speculated in a previous diary that he could potentially be a Vice Presidential pick if Hillary decides to run in 2016, and a few commenters made a good argument that while he could be a good pick eventually, him simply being mayor of a large city may not be quite enough experience for him to be one heartbeat away from the Presidency.

But what about if he were also a Secretary in President Obama's cabinet?

Granted, Secretary of Housing and Urban Development isn't as sexy as Secretary of State or as flashy as Secretary of Defense, but it is still an important position. According to their website, the cabinet's mission is:

"to increase homeownership, support community development and increase access to affordable housing free from discrimination."
And not only are things like homeownership and community development important to most Americans, it's also important to the Hispanic community, something that Mayor Castro could speak directly to as a Mexican American.

And if Hillary Clinton were at the top of the ticket, her experience in foreign affairs as Secretary of State could compliment perfectly with Mayor Castro's domestic experience as Mayor and HUD Secretary. And not only could Hillary help turn out the female vote, but Mayor Castro could help by turning out the Hispanic vote. Essentially, this could make 2016 a very good year for Democrats.

I expect most Republicans to be able to put two and two together and try to fight his nomination as much as possible, obviously citing Benghazi as a reason (just kidding...sort of). But if he does get confirmed as HUD Secretary, do you think he would be the front-runner for the VP slot in 2016? Sound off in the comments below.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Doubt it (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    greenbell, AlexDrew, MadGeorgiaDem, doc2

    Lack of experience and I think she'd pick a white male.

    "When dealing with terrorism, civil and human rights are not applicable." Egyptian military spokesman.

    by Paleo on Sun May 18, 2014 at 06:16:49 AM PDT

    •  Lack of experience? Almost 60 million voted (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Miss Blue, Remediator, GleninCA, Pluto

      for Sarah Palin to be one heartbeat away from the Presidency. McCain set the bar pretty low for a Vice President.

      And I predict HRC will NOT pick a white male - she'll pick either a white female or a non-white male. Regardless of your opinion about HRC, few would disagree that the Clintons are among the shrewdest politicians around. With these kind of poll numbers they aren't looking at how to get Hillary elected President - they're looking at how to get her elected in an historic landslide.  

      David Koch, a teacher and a Tea Partier sit down a table with a plate of a dozen cookies. Koch quickly stuffs 11 cookies in his pockets, leans to the bagger and says "watch out, the union thug will try to steal your cookie".

      by Dave in AZ on Sun May 18, 2014 at 07:50:50 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Agree. They'll have their shrewd hats (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        GleninCA, Pluto

        on and their calls are going to get returned.  

        If she runs and is nominated, Secretary Clinton would be in a position to choose whomever she wishes.  I've heard cases for a white male veep nom, Julian Castro, and, provocatively, another female.  

        If the Republicans thought HClinton was going to be easy to defeat, we wouldn't be hearing them squawk like chickens over Benghazi.  

        "How can we know the dancer from the dance?" (Yeats)

        by Remediator on Sun May 18, 2014 at 08:26:37 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  The first ever female at the head of (0+ / 0-)

        a ticket will pick a female as her running mate? Are you new to politics, and if not, are you serious?

        •  Absolutely serious, absolutely not new to politics (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Pluto, BlueOak

          I gave the speech supporting the Democratic nominee for our high school mock Presidential election. That would be supporting Hubert Humphrey in 1968.

          Presidential nominees have 2 primary criteria in selecting their VP candidate. #1 is if that VP candidate can bring their home state and/or other states into their column. JFK picked LBJ for Texas. Carter picked Mondale to shore up his appeal outside the south. #2 criteria is if the VP candidate can broaden their appeal. Reagan picked GHW Bush to soften the criticism that he was too conservative. GHW Bush in 1988 was called a 'wimp', once he picked Dan Quayle he was seen as an 'elder statesman'.  

          Hillary's weakness will be that she seen as a carry over from the politics of the 20th century by younger voters, and seen as not progressive enough and too tied to the Wall Street establishment by younger & more liberal voters. What better way to energize those voters by making the first female head of a major political party's ticket by making it an all women ticket? VP Elizabeth Warren would knock it out of the ballpark. VP Kirsten Gillibrand would be almost as exciting. Yes, Hillary would have to change her voter residency out of NY like Cheney did out of TX. Mazie Hirono (HI) would be interesting. Tammy Baldwin might be a bridge too far (an openly gay VP?), but would be fascinating. Assuming she is reelected this year (which I expect), Kay Hagan would expand the playing field in NC & GA.

          David Koch, a teacher and a Tea Partier sit down a table with a plate of a dozen cookies. Koch quickly stuffs 11 cookies in his pockets, leans to the bagger and says "watch out, the union thug will try to steal your cookie".

          by Dave in AZ on Sun May 18, 2014 at 10:25:51 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  As Gene Robinson sugested (0+ / 0-)

        a wet behind the ears Senator took the Clinton's shrewdness, wrapped it around their legs and gave them a run for all the corporate money and Jewish pandering that they could muster.

        If it had not been for Holbrook,  Hillary would have fallen on her face as Sec.of State. Obama and others took over after Holbrook's death, which has been a tragic loss for this Country;  Hillary simply continued to do what she does best, take what others have said, as she did during the Presidential debates, paraphrase it, and presents it as her own. She makes a great messenger.

        So, Bill will be running the show if she wins but, he was/is, too,overrated as a President. However, he does explain the ideas of others extremely well.

        Had the Clintons not supported Obama, Hillary could kiss good-bye a fighting chance to win the White House.  

        •  This is a liberal website? (0+ / 0-)

          Because this sure was creepy to read.

          wrapped it around their legs and gave them a run for all the corporate money and Jewish pandering that they could muster.
          •  Actually that's par for the course on this liberal (0+ / 0-)

            website - from a typical Hillary hater. For many progressives the Clintons are too tied to the Wall Street establishment, and all the other perceived establishments - the Clintons aren't progressive enough for them. While I emphasize with them, I've been on this planet long enough (62 years) to have seen the anti-Vietnam war progressives get buried by Nixon and the foreign policy progressives under Carter (SALT treaty, Camp David Accords, returning the canal to Panama) get buried by Reagan. I.E., push too far too fast to the left and the Right comes roaring back.

            These folks tend to forget and/or overlook that before the Clintons came along a Republican sat in the Oval Office for 20 of the previous 24 years from 1968-1992, including three of the largest landslides ever - Nixon 1972 and Reagan 1980 & 84. Since the Clinton years, a Democrat has won the popular vote 3 out of the last 4 elections.

            David Koch, a teacher and a Tea Partier sit down a table with a plate of a dozen cookies. Koch quickly stuffs 11 cookies in his pockets, leans to the bagger and says "watch out, the union thug will try to steal your cookie".

            by Dave in AZ on Sun May 18, 2014 at 11:11:03 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  someone who was (0+ / 0-)

      150% all in for her 2008 campaign.

      It's much more likely she'll choose Terry McAuliffe as a running mate than Castro.

      "It's almost as if we're watching Mitt Romney on Safari in his own country." -- Jonathan Capeheart

      by JackND on Sun May 18, 2014 at 09:25:28 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  This appointment for Julian Castro (6+ / 0-)

    by the Obama administration comes at a time when the "loyal" opposition is in heavy denial over immigration.  

    Castro's impressive profile contraindicates the Republicans' bigoted stubbornness.  He's a lot more capable and impressive than they are bigoted and stubborn.  

    I hope he continues to rise in our party.  A place on the 2016 ticket?  That would be just fine with me.  

    "How can we know the dancer from the dance?" (Yeats)

    by Remediator on Sun May 18, 2014 at 06:33:30 AM PDT

    •  I have been thinking about this... (7+ / 0-)

      ... since Castro gave the keynote in 2012.

      If we can ever get Latinos to start voting close to their real numbers and after Texas is really in play, it will game over for the GOP in presidential elections.

      Castro is a very well spoken and charismatic person who has the potential of galvanizing Latino voters into the Democratic and getting them out to vote.

      I cannot think of anyone better for this ticket. And... Castro for president 2024! :)

      •  Yes. The landscape out there is so (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MBramble, TexMex, GleninCA, Pluto

        complex, the least we can do as a party is to ask our most capable people to lead the charge.  

        IMO Julian Castro more than meets that criterion.  

        "How can we know the dancer from the dance?" (Yeats)

        by Remediator on Sun May 18, 2014 at 07:22:10 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  getting higher latino vote turnout % (0+ / 0-)

        isn't going to come from sticking a latino pol on the ticket, it's going to come from a massive investment in organizing young latinos at the local and state level, for decades. it will come from recruiting latino local and state candidates, and listening to them, and letting them lead, and organizing from within their community, and building up those networks of local politics.

        THEN you tap into that network for your national races.

        that's what the dem party has been gradually doing in california, and it'll pay off in the coming decade. dems need to be funding that kind of an effort everywhere. without it, castro or any other latin@ dem on a ticket will only bring marginal turnout improvement.

        you can't take the easy road.

  •  Yup, That is exactly what this looks like. (5+ / 0-)

    Grooming Hillary's runningmate.
    And not a bad choice. Politically brilliant in fact.
    but:

    most Republicans to be able to put two and two together
    and come up with what? Tupperware?
    The GOP has lost all sense of proportion. They may stonewall his nomination but mostly because he's latin (whether they admit that or not, that's the real deal). They are not capable of second step thought anymore.

    If I ran this circus, things would be DIFFERENT!

    by CwV on Sun May 18, 2014 at 06:33:58 AM PDT

  •  If he's being groomed by the establishement (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Susipsych, greenbell, schumann, GleninCA

    then chances are high he's going to be another neoliberal shill.  I couldn't find much on his current policy positions, but there's plenty of time for him to discover the American Dream of scoring big in the Public Service Industry.

    Hillary does not have the benefit of a glib tongue.

    by The Dead Man on Sun May 18, 2014 at 06:38:08 AM PDT

    •  Well, San Antonio has a great newspaper. (0+ / 0-)

      Castro is written about all the time. There are lots of right wingers in the area to say bad stuff about him to if you want to look for that too.
      Not to mention that anyone who is nominated will get vetted and hung out to dry for a good long look.

      Especially if the above comment is what our side looks like.

      Really?
      Your comment sounds awfully "anti government" to me, which I consider more of a right wing talking point.

    •  from what i've looked at (0+ / 0-)

      he is involved with the education "reform" groups, and talks up collaboration with big business, so yeah. sounds like a clintonite protege.

  •  The Dems. have a deep bench. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TexMex, starduster, GleninCA

    Mr. Castro is ready with mayorial experience and now he will head an important program of the Federal Government, Housing and Urban Development.  Good luck Mr. Castro, hope that DC does not get too toxic for you.

    •  For VP, yes. For prez, no. (0+ / 0-)

      New Republic: So are the left-wing blogs as bad as the Tea Party ones in this case? -------------------------Chuck Schumer: Left-wing blogs are the mirror image. They just have less credibility and less clout.

      by AlexDrew on Sun May 18, 2014 at 07:53:23 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  same two naysaying at every diary on this topic (0+ / 0-)

    one calling him a shill and the the other just "no" with no explanation why.

    •  Hillary derangement syndrome... (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Miss Blue, TexMex, GleninCA, Pluto

      is as strong here as it is within the GOP.

      Anyone right of Bernie Sanders is going to get the neobluedog, corporate suck up label.

      As for Castro, I think he balances Hillary's "safe bet" with the need for some vision to get young voters enthused. I think it would be smart...he doesn't have any Congressional baggage and it will be hard to f up HUD (anymore than it already is)

      •  There is a reason why GOP is attacking Hillary (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        GleninCA, Pluto

        so early and so often. She is strong in even Kentucky. The GOP is in trouble in Kentucky once 'that black man' is not on the ballot. Hillary is the only Dem who can win Kentucky and West Virginia.

      •  I don't think BBB has HDS, but it is really (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        TexMex

        bad here. They treat her as if she's a Republican. Luckily, we now know they are only 8% of the community. And this is a progressive blog. She will be fine.

        New Republic: So are the left-wing blogs as bad as the Tea Party ones in this case? -------------------------Chuck Schumer: Left-wing blogs are the mirror image. They just have less credibility and less clout.

        by AlexDrew on Sun May 18, 2014 at 07:55:52 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  I think Hillary will pick a white, male, governor (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    greenbell, JamieG from Md, PeterHug

    or former governor. I don't think being a big city mayor, and HUD Secretary, is going to be enough to be on the 2116 ticket regardless of the Democratic Presidential nominee.

    However, I really like both Castro brothers, who are very polished Latino politicians with great crossover appeal. I hope one of them can be governor of Texas at some point. That would be the platform needed to be on a national ticket.

    "let's talk about that" uid 92953

    by VClib on Sun May 18, 2014 at 07:59:30 AM PDT

  •  as one of those people (5+ / 0-)

    who had been skeptical of the viability of Castro becoming a V.P. candidate directly from his position as mayor, you're right...if Castro becomes a cabinet member and manages that department well during his tenure that federal executive experience would give him a lot more credibility as a vice presidential candidate.

    •  But I don't see it helping with HRC's demographics (0+ / 0-)

      I see her running to the right trying to max out her vote with suburban voters, married women, even Republican women.  

      If you want me to focus on the fact that Hillary is a woman, put a nice bland white guy next to her.  Don't distract me with the sexy Hispanic guy.  

      She might think it would give her a landslide but it could work the other way if Republicans figure the best way to diminish her suburban appeal is to run lots of photos of her with Castro, the Secretary of Housing and URBAN Development.  

      It just seems to be conflicted messaging to me.  

      Maybe some of her brain dead handlers think it would increase her appeal with progressive but it doesn't work that way for me.  I'm concerned about policy not just getting the next shiny object the neo-liberals have groomed to appeal to people who vote on identity.  Waving Castro in front of me isn't going to make me forget where Hillary stands on war, TPP, Social Security, whatever.

      •  it would do two huge things, in my opinion... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        GleninCA

        ...not only would it boost Hillary's likely share of the Hispanic vote, but it would likely also increase the number of Hispanics who actually turnout (Hispanics typically do not turn out in as large numbers as many other demographic groups, for a variety of reasons).

  •  Why am I thinking of of Jimmy Smits ? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JamieG from Md, GleninCA

    Could it be that West Wing was the last time I watched television?

    I support application of Common Core Standards to Congressmen.

    by Wood Gas on Sun May 18, 2014 at 08:14:25 AM PDT

  •  Why Vice President..? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Pluto

    It's a Democratic thing; when a dark horse wins the presidency and the terms are expired, that comes in it's wake? Yes, the over-the-hill wanna-be hacks who have already been through the presidential candidate grinder and delude themselves and all their Democratic friends that this time it is 'their turn' on the throne. The old trap of arrogant entitlement. It makes it all the more annoying when the highest seat of office is seen as a dynastic right, that somehow the public will approve of the presidency as a 'family affair'. For those of you with long enough memories, we can all remember how well that went.
    Dark horses work well for the Democratic Party. Ultimately, the US electorate have a messianic bent, and Democratic voters like new blood, so it would make sense that rather than sidelining Julian Castro as a 'step and fetch it' man for the hair apparent, he ought to be their front running candidate.
    At least they would stand a chance of winning.

    If a tree falls in the forest and no one is there to see it - how do you know there is a forest?

    by zappedpyramid on Sun May 18, 2014 at 08:18:41 AM PDT

  •  Why would Hillary pick him? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wu ming

    Would he deliver Texas? No. Would Latinos vote materially differently because one of their own, an obscure politician they've never heard of, is on the ticket? No. When there is an accomplished statesman or stateswoman of Hispanic descent, he or she will be an electoral dynamo. This guy is a mayor of a mid-tier city, and perhaps a short-term Cabinet Secretary for one of the less important departments (i.e. not State, Treasury, or Defense).

  •  It would be a real strategic failure (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    GleninCA, Pluto, BlueOak, bepanda

    if HRC did not pick a Latino for VP. One of the really big electoral problems faced by the Democratic Party today is not so much garnering Latino support as much as getting Latinos to vote. That's got to be a central concern and a Latino VP candidate would really help tremendously.

    Voting is the means by which the public is distracted from the realities of power and its exercise.

    by Anne Elk on Sun May 18, 2014 at 10:26:04 AM PDT

  •  Hillary would never pick someone who has (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    greenbell

    more charisma and appeal than her. I expect we'll see Evan Bayh as VP. He might be the only politician with less charisma than her.

    President Obama at Madison Rally 9/28/2010 - "Change is not a spectator sport."

    by askew on Sun May 18, 2014 at 12:30:31 PM PDT

  •  Still not ready for VP (0+ / 0-)

    It's still a pretty lean resume. Better, but not great. He's young. Let him serve out the rest of this term and then maybe, get a different cabinet position in the next Dem admin or better yet, go back to Texas and take on Ted Cruz and win a senate seat. He's a bright rising star for sure, but I don't think he's a good VP choice yet.

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