The line outside of the Gorgeous Gael wrapped around the block as Houstonians waited to discuss health care and immigration reform with the Senate hopeful.
"I'm trying to meet every single person here so that they know I want to represent and serve them, be accountable, be responsive and get something done for the people of Texas," O'Rourke said. "Everyone needs a full-time representative, and I want to be that person for Texas."
Encouraged, inspired, blown away by everyone who came out today in Houston. Thank you!! pic.twitter.com/lIYLKd0CFg— Beto O'Rourke (@BetoORourke) July 8, 2017
O'Rourke, a Democrat who represents El Paso, announced in March that he would challenge incumbent Cruz in the 2018 election. O'Rourke has advocated for legalizing marijuana and preaches tolerance on the U.S.-Mexico border in defiance of President Donald Trump's "Build that wall" mantra.
The third-term congressman and fluent Spanish speaker is the kind of rising political star Democrats hope can help begin turning deep red Texas blue, aided by a booming Hispanic population and state politics pushed even farther right by Pres. Donald Trump and Cruz.
O'Rourke first made a name for himself playing guitar for Foss, an El Paso punk rock band that included drummer Cedric Bixler-Zavala, who went on to play for the Grammy Award-winning act The Mars Volta.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
SEE ALSO: O'Rourke makes his 2018 Senate bid official
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