Heavy metal singer turned legislator backs O'Rourke after GOP attacks him for being in a band

A heavy metal singer who won a Virginia state election defended Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D), who is running for Senate in Texas, after the GOP attacked him for once being in a punk band.

Virginia House Del. Danica Roem (D), a former journalist, was also the longtime lead singer of a thrash metal band called Cab Ride Home, according to Billboard.

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Roem, also the first openly transgender person elected to a state legislature, defended O’Rourke after the Texas Republican Party mocked him for being in the punk ban Foss in the early 1990s.

“Hey, @BetoORourke: You know what happens when you get attacked in your campaign for being in a band?” Roem tweeted on Wednesday.

“You get sworn in the following January and then vote in May to expand access to quality, affordable health insurance for hundreds of thousands of people in your state. #RockOn.”

O’Rourke declined to debate his opponent, Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzSenate advances public lands bill in late-night vote The Hill’s Morning Report – Trump’s public standing sags after Floyd protests GOP senators introduce resolution opposing calls to defund the police MORE (R), leading the Texas GOP to take shots at his band and his prior arrest for DWI more than 20 years ago.

“Sorry, can’t debate. We have a gig,” the Texas GOP tweeted from its official account, with a picture of O’Rourke and his band.

“There’s always the chance that Robert ‘Beto’ O’Rourke won’t debate Senator Cruz because he got into a hazy situation,” read another post, which included O’Rourke’s mugshot from a 1998 DWI arrest.

O’Rourke’s campaign did not respond Tuesday to a request for comment. 

He has acknowledged and apologized for his prior arrests on multiple occasions over the years. The arrests were for jumping a fence at the University of Texas at El Paso in 1995 and for drunk driving three years later.

O’Rourke said he was not convicted in either case. The DWI charge was dismissed after he completed a diversion program the following year.

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