Who is Joaquin Castro? Texas Rep. says Russia probe may land Trump associates in jail

Who is Joaquin Castro? Texas Rep. says Russia probe may land Trump associates in jail
Rep. Joaquin Castro speaks during the final day of the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia.
Source: Paul Sancya/AP
Rep. Joaquin Castro speaks during the final day of the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia.
Source: Paul Sancya/AP

Democratic Rep. Joaquin Castro of Texas made headlines when he told CNN's Wolf Blitzer in a televised interview that he was anticipating the incarceration of some Trump associates.

“I wouldn't be surprised after all of this is said and done that some people end up in jail,” Castro said, referencing the investigations into Trump’s ties to Russia.

Castro serves on the House intelligence committee and told Blitzer that he was unable to elaborate on his comment, but restated the premise: “My impression is that people will probably be charged, and I think that people will probably go to jail.”

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi walks with Rep. Joaquin Castro after a closed-door briefing with acting director of Immigration and Customs Enforcement Thomas Homan.
Source: J. Scott Applewhite/AP

Castro steps out of his brother’s shadow

Castro's twin brother Julian Castro, the former mayor of San Antonio and secretary of Housing and Urban Development under Barack Obama's administration, has been floated as a possible Democratic presidential candidate in 2020, but he’s mostly flown under the radar in the early days of the Trump administration.

Joaquin Castro has had a much quieter, albeit distinguished, political career. The Texas congressman was selected as a chief deputy whip for the Democratic Party in the 114th Congress. Castro currently sits on the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence and the House Foreign Affairs Committee.

During the 2016 presidential campaign, Castro acted as a surrogate for Hillary Clinton.

Rep. Joaquin Castro addresses the Texas Democratic convention.
Source: Eric Gay/AP

A quiet progressive with a history of nonprofit work

Castro’s public image has tended toward a focus on community-building and nonprofit work. His biography materials go out of their way to elaborate on his nonpartisan activities.

The following is a truncated excerpt from his Congressional page:

He created the Trailblazers College Tour, personally raising money to send underprivileged students on college visits, giving them exposure to some of the nation’s best institutions of higher education. He also founded SA READS, San Antonio’s largest literacy campaign and book drive. ... Joaquin created the annual Families Helping Families dinner and awards. ... Joaquin is active on several boards of education-related, non-profit organizations, including the National College Advising Corps, and the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials’ Taskforce on Education.

Despite his evasion of politicizing his position, Castro is a clear liberal. The American Civil Liberties Union gave him a 94 percent rating in 2015 to 2016, and the Human Rights Campaign awarded him a perfect score, according to VoteSmart

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Chris Sosa

Chris Sosa is a journalist and political analyst based in New York City. He can be reached at csosa@mic.com.

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