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Cockburn Liberalism

Why did nobody mention that Beto O’Rourke’s wife is a billionaire heiress?

Bloomberg once estimated the wealth of Beto’s father-in-law at $20 billion. But obviously that’s not worth mentioning when you profile him

October 29, 2018

5:05 PM

29 October 2018

5:05 PM

Young Beto O’Rourke casts himself as the ‘anti-Trump’. But his father-in-law, it turns out, is a billionaire property developer with a contentious relationship with non-white residents — not unlike the President. Beto’s more the proto-Jared Kushner.

The New York Times today revealed the highly interesting news that friend-of-the-little-guy Beto married well. Very well. His wife is not only the daughter of William D. Sanders, aka the Warren Buffet of real estate, Cockburn can reveal she is the only daughter. Sanders’s portfolio is valued at about $20 billion.

Nothing wrong with that, of course, but something is amiss when an endless stream of laudatory profiles fails to mention it. ‘Stop the Press Before It Profiles Beto O’Rourke Again,’ came the muffled cry of Politico’s Jack Shafer a couple of weeks ago, from beneath a deluge of glowing cuttings about the Texas congressman. Having a profile of the boyishly handsome skateboarder standing against Sen. Ted Cruz is as key an ingredient to a left-leaning media site as an Instagram page or a round of cuts when your staff try to unionise.

A Yahoo profile of O’Rourke described how he ‘married Amy Sanders, a charter school administrator,’ and served on the City Council ‘championing downtown redevelopment.’ But the reporter didn’t bother to look into who Sanders’s father was.

Neither did this Guardian piece.

Or this Washington Post one.

Nor this one in Vanity Fair.

TIME magazine were agog as the congressman cooed, ‘I just want to be as raw and direct and real as I can — and it seems to be working.’

And GQ were content to focus on other members of his family. ‘O’Rourke ascended the stage with his daughter, Molly, riding piggyback. She and her mom, Amy, also dressed in a Diablito uniform, stood by O’Rourke as he presented Daniel with a cake and led a chorus of “Happy Birthday.”’ Cute stuff — but we’d rather hear about their property magnate grandfather if it’s all the same.

We could go on. Even the paper who broke the scoop couldn’t be bothered to do any digging when they went on the trail with Beto in February. A New York Times reporter watched O’Rourke speak to a crowd in El Paso. He ‘appealed to their anger at Washington. The “system is rigged,” he said, adding, “I can tell you that access is purchased, that votes are bought and paid for, that outcomes are determined before you have a chance to call your member of Congress or senator.”’

Worrying stuff indeed, Beto.

Per today’s Times, ‘Over the next two years, Mr. O’Rourke would defend the plan before angry barrio residents and vote to advance it. At other times, he would abstain. Business owners who opposed the plan accused Mr O’Rourke of a conflict, citing the involvement of his father-in-law, the billionaire developer William D. Sanders.’


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