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Difference between revisions of "Ted Cruz"

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Revision as of 11:46, 28 September 2013

Ted Cruz
Ted Cruz.jpg
U.S. Senate, Texas
Incumbent
In office
January 3, 2013-Present
Term ends
January 3, 2019
Years in position 1
PartyRepublican
PredecessorKay Bailey Hutchison (R)
Compensation
Base salary$174,000/year
Elections and appointments
First electedNovember 6, 2012
Next generalNovember 2018
Campaign $$14,511,279
Term limitsN/A
Education
High schoolSecond Baptist High
Bachelor'sPrinceton University
J.D.Harvard
Personal
BirthdayDec. 22, 1970
Place of birthCalgary, Alberta
Net worth$1,661,021
ReligionSouthern Baptist
Websites
Office website
Campaign website
Ted Cruz campaign logo
Rafael Edward "Ted" Cruz (b. December 22, 1970, in Calgary, Alberta) is a Republican member of the U.S. Senate from Texas.[1] He was first elected in 2012. He defeated David Dewhurst in the primary runoff on July 31, 2012, and went on to win in the general election on November 6, 2012.

According to various reports, Cruz is considering a presidential run in 2016. However there is a question as to whether Cruz is actually eligible to become president, due to the fact that he was born in Canada. The debate hinges on how the phrase from the Constitution "No Person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office of President." is interpreted.[2][3] Cruz released his birth certificate in August of 2013, but there may still be questions as to whether he is a "natural born Citizen."[4]

Although Cruz is considered a more moderate right of center Republican party vote, according to an analysis of multiple outside rankings, it is due to a tendency to vote against Republican-sponsored bills that are not conservative or libertarian enough. As a result. he may break with party lines on a vote and vote in the same way as many Democrats do, but for a very different reason.

Biography

Ted Cruz earned his BA in Public Policy from Princeton University in 1992. He went on to receive his J.D. from Harvard Law School in 1995. Cruz has worked in a number of positions in the law field and is currently partner of Morgan, Lewis & Bockius Limited Liability Partnership.[5]

Cruz served as Solicitor General of Texas from 2003-2008. In this role he was the youngest Solicitor General in the nation, as well as the longest-serving and first Hispanic Solicitor General in the state. Among his accomplishments, Cruz argued 40 oral arguments, including nine before the U.S. Supreme Court.[6]

In August 2012, he was included in a list of 20 Latino political rising stars compiled by the San Francisco Chronicle.[7]

Cruz won election to the U.S. Senate on November 6, 2012.[8]

Committee assignments

U.S. Senate

2013-2014

Cruz serves on the following Senate committees[9]:

Issues

Legislative actions

113th Congress

CongressLogo.png

The 113th Congress has had 55 out of 5,401 introduced bills enacted into law (1%) as of November 30, 2013. Comparatively, the 112th Congress had 1.14% of introduced bills enacted into law in the first session.[10] The Senate has confirmed 16,878 out of 19,009 executive nominations received thus far (88.8%). For more information pertaining to Cruz's voting record in the 113th Congress, please see the below sections.[11]

National security

American response in Syria
See also: United States involvement in Syria

While speaking to a crowd at the Heritage Foundation, Cruz praised Obama's decision to seek congressional approval, while still acknowledging he would have voted "no." Cruz said, "I would have voted ‘no,’ great many others would have voted ‘no.’ But I think it reflected a wise and prudent judgement on the part of the president to postpone the vote, rather than have that authority rejected and I don’t believe that the president is going to ignore the views of the American people."[12]

John Brennan CIA nomination

Voted "No" Cruz voted against the confirmation of John Brennan as Director of the Central Intelligence Agency. The nomination was confirmed by the Senate on March 7, 2013, with a vote of 63 - 34. Most Democrats supported the nomination, while Republicans were somewhat divided with roughly one-third supporting the nomination.[13]

Drones filibuster

See also: Rand Paul filibuster of John Brennan's CIA Nomination in March 2013

On March 6, 2013, Senator Rand Paul (R) led a 13-hour filibuster of President Obama's CIA Director nominee, John Brennan. Paul started the filibuster in order to highlight his concerns about the administration's drone policies. In particular, Paul said he was concerned about whether a drone could be used to kill an American citizen within the United States border, without any due process involved. Paul and other civil liberties activists have been critical that President Obama did not offer a clear response to the question. A total of 14 senators joined Paul in the filibuster -- 13 Republicans and one Democrat.[14][15][16]

Cruz was 1 of the 13 Republican senators who joined Paul in his filibuster.[17][18]

According to the website Breitbart, 30 Republican senators did not support the filibuster.[19][20]

The day after the filibuster, Attorney General Eric Holder sent a letter to Paul, responding to the filibuster. Holder wrote, "Does the president have the authority to use a weaponized drone to kill an American not engaged in combat on U.S. soil? The answer to that is no."[21]

Economy

Ted Cruz's stand

See also:United States budget debate, 2013
Although many are referring to it as a filibuster, others argue that Cruz's marathon speech is not technically classified as such due to Senate procedural rules.[22] Senate procedure dictates that Cruz would have to yield the floor by Wednesday afternoon.[23]

Beginning at 2:41 p.m. ET on September 24, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) took the Senate floor to begin speaking until he's "no longer able to stand." By doing this, Cruz intended a symbolic stand against allowing a 'motion to proceed' vote needed to continue the vote on the House-passed stopgap budget bill, which stripped funding for Obamacare.


Ted Cruz's speech on the floor of the Senate on September 24-25, 2013

Cruz believes that an affirmative vote would allow Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid to remove the Obamacare language and would "cut off debate on a bill without even knowing what's in it." However, many Republicans have echoed a similar concern to Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell who stated, "We'd all be hard-pressed to explain why we were opposed to a bill we were in favor of. It strikes me as a no-brainer."[24]

If the 'motion to proceed' passes on Wednesday, a cloture vote will follow on either Friday or Saturday. If the cloture receives the required 60 votes, Reid will then be able to introduce an amendment on Sunday to the original House resolution which would remove the threat of defunding Obamacare.[25] Cruz's speech may force debate on the measure to continue through the weekend, leaving the House very little time to pass a new spending bill by the October 1 deadline.[23]

At noon on September 25, after over 21 hours, Sen. Ted Cruz finished his speech and the Senate transitioned into the daily prayer.[26]

Paul Ryan Budget Proposal

Voted "No" In March 2013 the U.S. Senate soundly rejected a balanced budget plan by House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R).[27] Five Republicans joined every Democrat present to kill the measure, which failed on a 40-59 vote.[27]

Cruz was one of the five Senate Republicans who voted against Ryan's budget proposal.[27]

The budget cuts about $5 trillion over the next decade and aims to balance the budget by the end of the 10-year period.[23]

Some GOP tea partyers opposed the measure because of its reliance on $600 billion-plus in tax revenues on the wealthy enacted in January 2013 in order to balance the budget.[27]

Others in the Senate opposed the Ryan plan because of cuts from safety net programs for the poor and the inclusion of a plan to turn the Medicare program for the elderly into a voucher-like system for future beneficiaries born in 1959 or later.[27]

No Budget, No Pay Act of 2013

Voted "No" Cruz voted against H.R.325 -- No Budget, No Pay Act of 2013. The bill passed the Senate on January 31, 2013, with a vote of 64 - 34. The purpose of the bill was to temporarily suspended the debt ceiling and withhold the pay of members of Congress until a budget could be passed. The vote largely followed party lines with Democrats overwhelmingly supporting it and many Republicans in opposition to the bill.[28]

Immigration

Completion of fence along Mexico border

Voted "Yes" Cruz voted for Senate Amendment 1197 -- Requires the Completion of the Fence Along the United States-Mexico Border. The amendment was rejected by the Senate on June 18, 2013, with a vote of 39 - 54. The purpose of the amendment was to require the completion of 350 miles of fence described in the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 before registered provisional immigrant status may be granted. It would also require 700 miles of fence be completed before the status of registered provisional immigrants may be changed to permanent resident status. The vote followed party lines.[29]

Healthcare

Continuing Resolution filibuster
See also: United States budget debate, 2013

Cruz spoke for over 21 hours on the floor of the Senate in a faux filibuster about defunding The Affordable Care Act. He relinquished control of the floor at noon on September 25, 2013. According to Senate rules, the latest he could have spoken was only an hour later at 1 p.m. According to Majority Leader Harry Reid, "This is not a filibuster. This is an agreement that he and I made that he could talk."[30]

During the speech, Cruz was questioned by Democrats Tim Kaine of Virginia and Dick Durbin of Illinois and received the support of Utah Senator Mike Lee and Kentucky Senator Rand Paul.[30]

The speech took place after Cruz called for Republican senators to effectively filibuster the continuing resolution which passed the House in September 2013. He said, "Step two is the Senate, where all accounts suggest Harry Reid plans to use procedural gimmicks to try to add funding back in for Obamacare. If Reid pursues this plan — if he insists on using a 50-vote threshold to fund Obamacare with a partisan vote of only Democrats — then I hope that every Senate Republican will stand together and oppose cloture on the bill in order to keep the House bill intact and not let Harry Reid add Obamacare funding back in."[31]

He went on, "Now is a time for party unity; Senate Republicans should stand side-by-side with courageous House Republicans."[31]

Anti-Obamacare rally

Senators Cruz, Rand Paul and Mike Lee, who have been leading calls in the Senate to defund Obamacare in any spending bills, headlined a September 10, 2013, "Exempt America from Obamacare" event, organized by Tea Party Patriots and ForAmerica, along with other conservative groups.[32]

Democrats will stop at nothing to protect the president’s signature legislation, and too many Republicans are afraid to fight,” rally organizers wrote.[32] They also took a shot at the Office of Personnel Management rule allowing the federal government to continue subsidizing health plans for lawmakers and their aides.[32] “Even Big Government is getting a carve out now,” they wrote.[32]

The rally comes after 80 House members signed a letter in August 2013, calling on Congress to defund the health care law in upcoming fiscal battles.[32]

Social Issues

Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013

Voted "No" Cruz voted against S.47 -- Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013. The bill was passed by the Senate on February 12, 2013, with a vote of 78 - 22. The purpose of the bill was to combat violence against women, from domestic violence to international trafficking in persons. All 22 dissenting votes were cast by Republicans.[33]

Fox News interview

Before Cruz appeared on Fox News's "Hannity," Chris Wallace said that he had received opposition research and questions from fellow Republicans so that he could hammer Cruz on the show. Cruz responded to this news by saying, "I mean folks can do whatever they want to resist change, and there are a lot of people that have been in Washington a long time that are fearful of change. They’re fearful of risk, they’re fearful of anything that changes the clubby way Washington does business." He went on, "And you know, no matter what insults others choose to hurl at me and in the last few weeks they have picked quite a few, some of them have been pretty amusing actually, but no matter what they do I’m not going to respond in kind."[34]

Endorsements

Cruz declined to endorse fellow Texas senator John Cornyn or any other incumbent Republican in 2014. He stated, "I think every elected official, including me, owes it to the people, owes it the grass roots, to go and make the case to the grass roots why he or she is representing their interests." It is thought that his silence could embolden conservatives seeking to challenge incumbents in 2014.[35]

Despite a pledge to steer clear of endorsing incumbents, Cruz has financially backed a handful of Senate Republicans, including fellow Texan John Cornyn.[36]

Cruz’s leadership political action committee, Jobs Growth and Freedom Fund, made only five donations in the first six months of its existence, and all of those dollars went to incumbents. On May 10, 2013, according to Federal Election Commission records, Cruz wrote a $2,500 check to the campaign of Cornyn.[36]

Cruz also handed out out four other $2,500 donations to incumbents that same day: Jim Inhofe, Mike Lee, Jim Risch and Tim Scott, who was appointed to the Senate after Jim DeMint resigned and is running in 2014 for the remaining years of DeMint’s term.[36]

Pheasant hunting with Steve King

Cruz announced on August 30, 2013, that he accepted an invitation to hunt pheasants on October 26, 2013, in northwest Iowa with Steve King on the opening day of Iowa’s pheasant hunting season.[37]

“Yes, we are confirmed for a hunt with King,” Cruz spokeswoman Catherine Frazier said in an email statement. “The senator has enjoyed getting to know him and work with him on important issues before Congress. He’s honored to have received the invite.”[37]

Elections

2016

According to a report, Cruz is considering a presidential run in 2016.[2]

2012

See also: United States Senate elections in Texas, 2012

Cruz ran in the 2012 election for the U.S. Senate, representing Texas. He and David Dewhurst defeated Joe Agris, Curt Cleaver, Glenn Addison, Ben Gambini, Craig James, Tom Leppert and Lela Pittenger in the May 29, 2012, Republican primary. He then defeated Dewhurst in the primary runoff on July 31, 2012. He won in the general election on November 6, 2012.[1][38][39]

U.S. Senate, Texas General Election, 2012
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngTed Cruz 56.5% 4,440,137
     Democratic Paul Sadler 40.6% 3,194,927
     Libertarian John Jay Myers 2.1% 162,354
     Green David B. Collins 0.9% 67,404
Total Votes 7,864,822
Source: Texas Secretary of State "Official Election Results, 2012 General Election"
Primary
On July 31, 2012, Cruz defeated Lieutenant Governor David Dewhurst for the Republican nomination for U.S. Senate in a primary runoff.[40]
U.S. Senate Runoff Election, Texas Republican Primary, 2012
Candidate Vote % Votes
Green check mark transparent.pngTed Cruz 56.8% 631,812
David Dewhurst 43.2% 480,126
Total Votes 1,111,938

Campaign donors

Comprehensive donor information for Cruz is available dating back to 2012. Based on available campaign finance records, Cruz raised a total of $14,511,279 during that time period. This information was last updated on March 25, 2013.[41]

Ted Cruz's Campaign Contribution History
Year Office Result Contributions
2012 US Senate (Texas) Won $14,511,279
Grand Total Raised $14,511,279

2012

Breakdown of the source of Cruz's campaign funds before the 2012 election.

Cruz won election to the U.S. Senate in 2012. During that election cycle, Cruz's campaign committee raised a total of $14,511,279 and spent $14,031,864.[42] This is more than the average $10.2 million spent by Senate winners in 2012.[43]

Cost per vote

Cruz spent $3.16 per vote received in 2012.

Analysis

Ideology and leadership

See also: GovTrack's Political Spectrum & Legislative Leadership ranking

Based on an analysis of bill sponsorship by GovTrack, Cruz is a "centrist Republican follower" as of June 2013.[44]

Like-minded colleagues

The website OpenCongress tracks the voting records of each member to determine with whom he or she votes most and least often. The results include a member from each party.[45]

Cruz most often votes with:

Cruz least often votes with:

Voting with party

2013

The website OpenCongress tracks how often members of Congress vote with the majority of the chamber caucus. According to the website, Cruz has voted with the Republican Party 85.4% of the time, which ranked 38th among the 44 Senate Republican members as of May 2013.[46]

Lifetime missed votes

See also: Lifetime voting records of United States Senators and Representatives

According to the website GovTrack, Cruz missed 1 of 92 roll call votes from January 2013 to March 2013. This amounts to 1.1%, which is better than the median of 1.7% among current senators as of March 2013.[47]

Net worth

See also: Net Worth of United States Senators and Representatives

2011

Based on congressional financial disclosure forms and calculations made available by OpenSecrets.org, Cruz's net worth as of 2011 was estimated between $-204,951 to $3,526,994. That averages to $1,661,021, which is lower than the average net worth of Republican senators in 2011 of $6,358,668.[48]

Personal

Cruz and his wife, Heidi, have two children.[5]

Cruz was born in Calgary, Alberta, Canada on December 22, 1970. His father, a Cuban immigrant, fled his home country in 1957 after fighting against the dictator Fulgencio Batista. His mother is Irish-American.[49]

Rafael Cruz

Cruz's father, Rafael, has made headlines through increasing speaking engagements. At a speaking engagement in July 2013, Rafael compared President Obama to Fidel Castro. [50]

Recent news

This section displays the most recent stories in a Google news search for the term Ted + Cruz + Texas + Senate

All stories may not be relevant to this page due to the nature of the search engine.

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External links

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References

  1. 1.0 1.1 CNN "Texas Senate Race - 2012 Election Center"
  2. 2.0 2.1 Politico, "Report: Ted Cruz weighing W.H. run," May 1, 2013
  3. New Republic, "Meet the Most Important Ted Cruz Birther: Ted Cruz Ted Cruz is eligible to be president under almost any reading of the Constitution—except his own," May 6, 2013
  4. The Washington Post, "No, Ted Cruz ‘birthers’ are not the same as Obama birthers," August 19, 2013
  5. 5.0 5.1 Project Vote Smart biography
  6. Ted Cruz, "Bio," accessed November 1, 2012
  7. San Francisco Chronicle "20 Latino political rising stars of 2012 (with PHOTO GALLERY)," August 25, 2012
  8. Politico "2012 Election Map, Texas"
  9. Congressional Quarterly "Senate Committee List" Accessed January 22, 2013
  10. Congressional Record, "Resume of Congressional Activity, First Session of the 112th Congress," accessed September 5, 2013
  11. Congressional Record, "Resume of Congressional Activity, Second Session of the 113th Congress," accessed March 4, 2014
  12. Politico, "Pigs fly, Ted Cruz full of Obama praise," accessed September 12, 2013
  13. Project Vote Smart, "PN 48 - Nomination of John Brennan to be Director of the Central Intelligence Agency - Voting Record," accessed September 25, 2013
  14. CNN "Rand Paul says he's heard from White House after filibuster," March 7, 2013
  15. USA Today "Rand Paul filibuster ranks among Senate's longest," March 7, 2013
  16. ABC News "Rand Paul Wins Applause From GOP and Liberals," March 7, 2013
  17. The Blaze, "Here Are All the GOP Senators That Participated in Rand Paul’s 12+ Hour Filibuster… and the Ones Who Didn’t," March 7, 2013
  18. Los Angeles Times, "Sen. Rand Paul ends marathon filibuster of John Brennan," March 7, 2013
  19. Breitbart "AWOL: Meet The GOP Senators Who Refused to Stand With Rand," March 7, 2013
  20. Politico "Rand Paul filibuster blasted by Sens. John McCain, Lindsey Graham," March 7, 2013
  21. Washington Post "Eric Holder responds to Rand Paul with ‘no’," March 7, 2013
  22. CBS News, "Ted Cruz launches faux filibuster as Senate readies spending bill vote," accessed September 24, 2013
  23. 23.0 23.1 23.2 The Washington Post, "Cruz launches filibuster in opposition to Obamacare," accessed September 24, 2013
  24. LA Times, "Obamacare protest: Ted Cruz to speak until 'no longer able to stand,'" accessed September 24, 2013
  25. The Guardian, "Republican senator Ted Cruz launches marathon anti-Obamacare speech," accessed September 24, 2013
  26. CSPAN, "Sen. Cruz Debates CR & Defunding Health Care Law," accessed September 24, 2013
  27. 27.0 27.1 27.2 27.3 27.4 CBS News "Senate Rejects Paul Ryan Budget" accessed March 22, 2013
  28. Project Vote Smart, "HR 325 - To Ensure the Complete and Timely Payment of the Obligations of the United States Government Until May 19, 2013 - Voting Record," accessed September 25, 2013
  29. Project Vote Smart, "S Amdt 1197 - Requires the Completion of the Fence Along the United States-Mexico Border - Voting Record," accessed September 25, 2013
  30. 30.0 30.1 Politico, "Ted Cruz ends marathon speech," September 25, 2013
  31. 31.0 31.1 Roll Call, "Filibuster the House CR? Cruz, Other Conservatives Say ‘Yes’ (Updated)," September 20, 2013
  32. 32.0 32.1 32.2 32.3 32.4 Politico, "Rand Paul, Ted Cruz plan anti-Obamacare rally," accessed August 27, 2013
  33. Project Vote Smart, "S 47 - Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013 - Voting Record," accessed September 25, 2013
  34. Politico, "Ted Cruz responds to Chris Wallace," September 24, 2013
  35. The Washington Post, "Cruz speaks volumes with his silence on Senate GOP colleagues’ primary races," August 24, 2013
  36. 36.0 36.1 36.2 Washington Post, "Cruz backed Cornyn, other incumbents, despite no-endorsement pledge," accessed August 26, 2013
  37. 37.0 37.1 Des Moines Register, "Cruz confirms Iowa pheasant hunt on Oct. 26 with Congressman Steve King," accessed August 30, 2013
  38. Texas GOP - candidate list
  39. Associated Press Election results
  40. Texas Secretary of State, "Race Summary Report-2012 Republican Party Primary Runoff," accessed August 30, 2012
  41. Open Secrets "Career Fundraising for Ted Cruz," Accessed March 25, 2013
  42. Open Secrets "Ted Cruz 2012 Election Cycle," Accessed March 4, 2013
  43. Open Secrets, "Election 2012: The Big Picture Shows Record Cost of Winning a Seat in Congress," June 19, 2013
  44. Gov Track "Ted Cruz," Accessed June 7, 2013
  45. OpenCongress, "Ted Cruz," Accessed July 30, 2013
  46. OpenCongress, "Voting With Party," accessed June 6, 2013
  47. GovTrack, "Ted Cruz," Accessed April 2, 2013
  48. OpenSecrets.org "Ted Cruz (R-Texas), 2011," accessed February 22, 2013
  49. Texas Tribune, "Bio of Ted Cruz," accessed November 1, 2012
  50. Daily Caller, "Ted Cruz’s dad: Obama is ‘just like’ Castro," accessed July 22, 2013
Political offices
Preceded by
Kay Bailey Hutchison
U.S. Senate - Texas
2013-Present
Succeeded by
'