O’Rourke outraises Sen. Cruz in underdog ’18 bid to unseat him

FILE: El Paso Democratic Congressman Beto O'Rourke officially launches his campaign for the U.S. Senate race in 2018, accompanied by his wife, Amy, in El Paso, Texas, on Friday, March 31, 2017. The former punk rocker turned Democratic Texas congressman began his longshot bid to unseat Republican Sen. Ted Cruz, vowing to fight a culture of fear emanating from GOP-led Washington and suggesting it’s time to end America’s “failed” war on drugs. (Ruben R. Ramirez/The El Paso Times via AP)
FILE: El Paso Democratic Congressman Beto O'Rourke officially launches his campaign for the U.S. Senate race in 2018, accompanied by his wife, Amy, in El Paso, Texas, on Friday, March 31, 2017. The former punk rocker turned Democratic Texas congressman began his longshot bid to unseat Republican Sen. Ted Cruz, vowing to fight a culture of fear emanating from GOP-led Washington and suggesting it’s time to end America’s “failed” war on drugs. (Ruben R. Ramirez/The El Paso Times via AP)

AUSTIN (AP) — Democratic U.S. Rep. Beto O’Rourke has outraised U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz while beginning his underdog bid to unseat the incumbent Republican next year.

In a Facebook post Thursday, O’Rourke said his 2018 Senate campaign took in more than $2 million through the end of June. His campaign war chest was worth nearly $1.9 million, and O’Rourke says he won’t take PAC funding.

Spokeswoman Catherine Frazier said Cruz raised $1.6 million in 2017’s second quarter, and had $5.7 million in cash on-hand.

O’Rourke is a third-term House member from El Paso who once played guitar in a punk band. He launched his challenge of Cruz in March.

A Democrat hasn’t won statewide office in Texas since 1994 and Cruz finished second in 2016’s Republican presidential primary. Still, O’Rourke insists he’s beatable.

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