Ted Cruz’s net worth was estimated at $3.79 million by the nonpartisan Center of Responsive Politics in 2015. A more recent financial disclosure, filed in 2016, showed that he had up to $5 million while his liabilities were as low as $1.1 million, meaning his net worth could not be higher than $3.9 million. Roll Call estimates his net worth could be as little as $200,000.
Cruz, a Republican elected as Texas’ junior senator in 2012, earns $174,000 in annual salary. His $3.79 million net worth ranks him the 41st wealthiest member of the United States Senate. According to his financial disclosure, most of his money is in mutual funds and retirement accounts. He and his wife have $2 million to $5 million in mutual funds, retirement accounts, and stocks. He also loaned his Senate campaign between $500,001 and $1 million. The couple has liabilities ranging from $1 million to $5.3 million, making his exact net worth difficult to pin down.
The Center for Responsive Politics estimated his net worth at $1.84 million in 2011 before it increased to $3.4 million in 2012, after he briefly worked in a private law practice. His net worth was estimated down to $2.3 million in 2013 after his successful Senate run.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Ted Cruz’s Wife Heidi is the Family’s Primary Breadwinner
Heidi Cruz, a Washington alum herself, worked at JP Morgan Chase and Merrill Lynch before moving to Goldman Sachs in 2005, according to a profile in The Atlantic. She worked as a private wealth manager for the company for seven years before being promoted to oversee Goldman Sachs’ Investment Management Division for the Southwest region of the United States, based in Houston.
Her LinkedIn profile lists her as a managing director at the company. According to Glassdoor, the average managing director at Goldman Sachs earns over $300,000 without taking into account various bonuses.
Ted Cruz told The New York Times in October 2013 that the couple liquidated all of their assets to spend $1.2 million on his Senate bid.
“Sweetheart, I’d like us to liquidate our entire net worth, liquid net worth, and put it into the campaign,” he recalled telling his wife, adding, “what astonished me, then and now, was Heidi within 60 seconds said, ‘Absolutely,’ with no hesitation.”
2. Heidi Cruz Recently Said the Couple Could Not Afford to Buy a Second Home
Heidi Cruz revealed in a recent interview with The Atlantic that the couple would not be able to buy a second home if her husband wins his re-election race.
“I really feel mission-driven on what he’s accomplishing,” she told the outlet, but added that “it does take some supportiveness, you know. Six to seven years in it, with me being the primary breadwinner — it’s like, ‘Uh, yeah, this is when people say thank you. I’ll now take that appreciation.’ Yeah, we’re seven years into this, and we’re not buying a second home anytime soon.”
3. The Cruz Family Is in the Top 1 Percent of Earners
Heidi Cruz’s estimated base salary of $300,000 and Ted Cruz’s $174,000 annual Senate salary puts the couple in the top 0.7 percent of earners, according to the 2016 Current Population Survey. Their conservatively estimated $474,000 income is eight times the median household income in Texas, according to Census data.
Along with his salary, Ted Cruz also receives royalties from his book, A Time for Truth: Reigniting the Promise of America. According to The Washington Post, his book deal guaranteed him at least $318,750 in royalty payments. In 2015, he reported earning between $100,001 and $1 million in book royalties. According to his financial disclosure, he also received an advance for more than $271,000.
4. Ted Cruz Met His Wife When They Both Worked For George W. Bush
The couple met working on George W. Bush’s 2000 presidential campaign, Heidi Cruz told The Atlantic. They married five months after their first date. Ted Cruz went on to work at the Federal Trade Commission during the early Bush years while Heidi Cruz accepted a job at the Treasury Department.
Ted Cruz moved back to Texas when he accepted a job as the state’s solicitor general in 2002 while Heidi stayed in Washington DC to serve as an aide to then-national security advisor Condoleezza Rice. She ultimately joined her husband in Texas when she accepted a job at Merrill Lynch.
Ted Cruz briefly worked at the Texas law firm Cooper & Kirk PLLC before running for Senate in 2012. He previously studied law at Princeton and Harvard Law School before serving as a clerk to Supreme Court Chief Justice William Rehnquist. While serving as Texas solicitor general, Cruz also taught Supreme Court litigation at the University of Texas School of Law.
5. Cruz’s Democratic Challenger Has a Much Higher Net Worth
Democratic Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke, who is running to unseat Cruz, has a considerably higher net worth, in part because of a technology company he founded in El Paso. The Center for Responsive Politics estimated his net worth at $8.95 million in 2015. The Texas Tribune found that he and his wife listed assets worth anywhere from $3.5 million to $16 million, with liabilities totaling anywhere from $1.3 million to $5.7 million.
O’Rourke’s wife Amy Sanders comes from a wealthy family and between $1 million and $5 million of their net worth is made up by her trust fund, The Texas Tribune reported. Her father, Bill Sanders, is a successful real estate investor who founded Security Capital, a real estate investment trust that he later sold to GE for $5.4 billion, according to The Texas Observer. The billionaire was accused of using a Super PAC to “circumvent loopholes in campaign finance law” to help O’Rourke win his first congressional race in 2012 by Sylvestre Reyes, the incumbent Democrat who lost the race. O’Rourke denied any coordination with the PAC. According to the San Antonio Express, Sanders gave the The Campaign for Primary Accountability PAC $18,750 of the $1.9 million it raised. The PAC spent $240,000 in the El Paso region during O’Rourke’s primary campaign, Politico reported.
Like Cruz, O’Rourke and his wife liquidated between $1.25 million and $5.5 million in personal assets to fund his Senate bid, according to McClatchy.
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