Beto O’Rourke has been invited to the first in the nation primary state of New Hampshire. The state Democrat Party was asked to come speak with voters and meet with political operators in the state on the heels of a surprisingly narrow loss to Sen. Ted Cruz for his U.S. Senate seat. Liberals are gushing over O’Rourke—whose real name is Robert—because they think he’s an attractive guy who can talk a great game despite having no experience for the job. The media loves him, too, propelling him from a back-bench congressman who lost a Senate race to a possibly top tier candidate for the Democrat nomination for president in 2020.
MEANWHILE—Dozens of Democrats are staying mum about whether they plan to run for president in 2020. The list is far too long to recite. But handfuls of them who deny they’re a candidate “at this point” or are “thinking about it” are making the rounds, putting out books, visiting early election states, and enticing the media. There’s a chance some 30 Democrats could run next time around—including the very real possibility Hillary Clinton is among them.
Robert Beto O’Rourke, a Dem candidate for Senate in Texas, used his position to push a real estate deal that would enrich his own family, according to a New York Times report. As an El Paso city councilman back in the mid-2000s, O’Rourke voted to approve a development deal that involved a retail destination, using eminent domain to seize the homes of hundreds of his own constituents. The project was proposed by billionaire investor and developer William Sanders, whose daughter O’Rourke had literally just gotten married to. The story, pushed by Republican incumbent Sen. Ted Cruz, won’t help O’Rourke bolster his campaign platitude of removing special interests from politics.
Despite the Hispanic nickname, Texas Dem candidate for senate Beto O’Rourke—real name Robert—is Irish. That fact was fodder for a joke by his Republican opponent, Sen. Ted Cruz, on Monday. During a rally Cruz talked about a time he was asked by a CNN reporter if people should vote for O’Rourke “to have more diversity in the Senate.”
“Is there a shortage of Irishmen in the Senate,” Cruz, who is half Cuban, quipped. O’Rourke has addressed his use of the nickname, saying anyone whose given name ends in “bert,” like Robert, ends up getting called “Beto” in Hispanic communities. Plus it’s handy if you’re running for office.
—QUOTABLE: “You know this in McAllen [Texas] — if you are born Robert, or Albert, or Gilbert, or Umberto — your folks, your friends, your community calls you Beto.” -O’Rourke at an October CNN townhall
Texas senate candidate “Robert” Beto O’Rourke is refusing to share his views about the caravan of Central Americans headed toward the U.S. border. In response to an email from the Daily Caller, the Democrat’s campaign said it does not yet have anything to say on the issue, which is of more than passing importance to the Lone Star State. In a CBS interview, O’Rourke, who is challenging Sen. Ted Cruz, said the U.S. should work to improve the living conditions in the Central American countries where the caravan originated. Republicans have pointed to the caravan as exhibit A for the need for better border security, and President Trump has said he’ll send in the military if needed.
—QUOTABLE: “Beto does not yet have a statement about the migrant caravan. Stay tuned…In general, Beto believes that immigrants help our state and country grow strong, safe, and prosperous and wants to ensure that immigrants have a lawful, earned path to citizenship.” -Email from O’Rourke’s campaign
FOX NEWS SUNDAY
Senator Rand Paul tells Chris Wallace the Saudi account that journalist Jamal Khashoggi was killed in a fist fight at their consulate isn’t believable. “This is just another in the line of long instances of Saudi insults to the civilized world,” Paul said. He called for ending arms sales to the Arab kingdom and reconsidering their status as an American ally.
MEET THE PRESS
Senator Thom Tillis echoed Rand Paul’s sentiment to Chuck Todd on Meet the Press: “In Saudi Arabia, you do not do something of this magnitude without having clearance from the top. We need to find out who that is and hold him accountable,” Tillis said.
THIS WEEK with GEORGE STEPHANOPOLOUS
US Senate candidate Beto O’Rourke is walking back his use of the “Lyin’ Ted” epithet he borrowed from President Trump to attack Ted Cruz. Cruz and Trump have made up, and Trump is campaigning for Cruz before Election Day. This week on the campaign trail, O’Rourke said the “Lyin’ Ted monicker” was fitting for his opponent and Trump was right to use it. But under pressure to disassociate himself in any way at all from the Commander in Chief, he apologized to ABC News: “That wasn’t the best phrase for me to use but, you know, I’m — I’m going to do my best to stay focused on the future.”
CBS FACE THE NATION
Senator Ben Sasse touted his new book, “Them,” which analyzes the deep political divide in the country. The book points to the digital revolution alienating people and removing community associations that until recently kept people together despite political differences.
Beto O’Rourke is getting sued. The Texas Democrat senate candidate challenging Sen. Ted Cruz allegedly sent constituents text messages without getting their consent, according to a lawsuit filed in a Northern District of Texas court. The class action lawsuit alleges that plaintiff Sameer Syeed received numerous unsolicited text messages from the Beto for Texas campaign despite multiple attempts to stop them. Sending unsolicited texts is a violation of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act. O’Rourke’s campaign—“Beto’s” real name is Robert, by the way—blamed a volunteer for the mix-up.
—QUOTABLE: “I know, I know — I’ve gotten three of them myself. My dad has gotten five…By the third one I was thinking, ‘maybe I should vote for him.’” -Sen. Ted Cruz
Real Housewives of Dallas star D’Andra Simmons says her support for home-state Senator Ted Cruz is fizzling. She tells TMZ she’s tired of Cruz towing the Republican Party line, and says there’s buzz in her very-conservative suburban enclave that Democrat Beto O’Rourke just might beat the two-time presidential candidate.