Beto O’Rourke Drew a Bigger Crowd Than Any Democrat Since Obama

It didn’t hurt that Willie Nelson was there, too.

Beto O'Rourke

Laura Roberts/Invision/AP

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On Saturday night, Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-Texas), who is challenging Sen. Ted Cruz in one of this year’s most competitive Senate races, held a much-anticipated campaign rally with country legend Willie Nelson in Austin. And, well, a few people showed up:

According to organizers, the event attracted 55,000 (presumably) supporters—more than any Democratic candidate has drawn for a single event since President Barack Obama was on the campaign trail.

O’Rourke, who was once a drummer in a punk rock band, joined Nelson on vocals for a new anti-Cruz ballad, “Vote ‘Em Out”:

O’Rourke, who trails the incumbent by 4.5 points in the RealClearPolitics polling average, was originally slated to debate Cruz for the second time Sunday, but the debate was postponed late last week when it appeared senators might need to remain in Washington for weekend votes on the confirmation of Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh. No makeup date has been scheduled yet; the final debate is on tap for October 16.

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Minority rule, corruption, disinformation, attacks on those who dare tell the truth: There is a direct line from what's happening in Russia and Ukraine to what's happening here at home. And that's what MoJo's Monika Bauerlein writes about in "Their Fight Is Our Fight" to unpack the information war we find ourselves in and share a few examples to show why the power of independent, reader-supported journalism is such a threat to authoritarians.

Corrupt leaders the world over can (and will) try to shut down the truth, but when the truth has millions of people on its side, you can't keep it down for good. And there's no more powerful or urgent argument for your support of Mother Jones' journalism right now than that. We need to raise about $450,000 to hit our online fundraising budget in these next few months, so please read more from Monika and pitch in if you can.

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