Castro's new job has political drawbacks

AddThis

Housing and Urban Development Secretary nominee, San Antonio, Texas Mayor Julian Castro testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington on June 17, 2014. The Senate has easily confirmed Castro to head the Department of Housing and Urban Development in Wednesday's 71- 26 vote making Castro one of the highest-ranking Hispanics in government. 

 
Housing and Urban Development Secretary nominee, San Antonio, Texas Mayor Julian Castro testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington on June 17, 2014. The Senate has easily confirmed Castro to head the Department of Housing and Urban Development in Wednesday's 71- 26 vote making Castro one of the highest-ranking Hispanics in government.   

Last Wednesday, Julian Castro —the Mayor of San Antonio— was overwhelmingly confirmed by the US Senate as the next Secretary of Housing and Urban Development. The position will give the 39 year-old Democrat some serious Washington clout as he continues climbing up the rungs of the political ladder. Castro has openly expressed interest in higher office, and many are speculating that he could be Hillary Clinton's running mate in 2016 if the former First Lady and Secretary and State indeed decides to run for President.

What everyone else apparently has neglected to mention is that, by accepting this position to serve in President Barack Obama's cabinet for the remaining two and a half years of his term, Castro has totally and unequivocally disenfranchised himself from holding Statewide political office in this State.

Republicans love to link Democrats to the unpopular President, even if no such connection exists. Are you the five-term incumbent County Commissioner in Madisonville? Doesn't matter, your Republican opponent will plaster the airwaves and billboards with slogans blasting you as "Obama's best friend," even if you've never met —or voted for— the man. When it comes to someone like Castro, who will legitimately be indelibly linked, Republicans are figuratively frothing at the mouth thinking of the possibilities.

Furthermore, even when the day comes that Texas turns blue, Obama will not likely be a popular figure. Even in cycles where Democrats prevail Statewide, I cannot imagine a former Cabinet secretary of the Obama administration doing very well. This precludes Castro from running for Governor in 2018, which I had formerly assumed his plan had been all along.

I like Castro, and I would love to vote for him if he were to run for some high office. But unless Clinton has promised him the Vice-Presidency, I cannot imagine my vote going to a successful candidate in the near future.