10 things about Beto O’Rourke

Breaking News Emails

Get breaking news alerts and special reports. The news and stories that matter, delivered weekday mornings.

 / Updated 

By Dareh Gregorian

Beto O’Rourke formally threw his hat in the ring for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination Thursday. Here’s some things you might not know about the native Texan:

1. MET WIFE ON A BLIND DATE

O’Rourke met then-teacher Amy Hoover Sanders on a blind date in El Paso after being set up by friends. He took her across the border into Juarez, Mexico, for drinks. “It was a little bit of a test, to see if she was up for an adventure,” he told the Washington Post in 2017. They got married 10 months later.

2. WORKED AS A NANNY

After graduating from Columbia University, O’Rourke reportedly worked for a few months as a live-in nanny for a family on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. He took several other temporary gigs, including as an art mover for a company called Hedley’s Humpers. He later returned to El Paso, where he started his own media company called Stanton Street. It helped build and maintain websites, and published an alt-weekly style paper.

3. POLITICS IN THE FAMILY

O’Rourke’s father, Pat O’Rourke, was the El Paso county commissioner from 1978 to 1982 and a county judge from 1982 to 1986. The dad also worked on the Rev. Jesse Jackson’s presidential campaign in 1988.

4. WON SOME ELECTIONS

While he’s best known for losing his Senate race campaign against incumbent Ted Cruz in 2018, O’Rourke had been 5-0 in elections before that. He was elected to the El Paso City Council in 2005, defeating a two-term incumbent, and was later re-elected. He first ran for Congress in 2012, and reportedly knocked on 16,000 doors to defeat an eight-term incumbent in the Democratic primary. He served three terms before launching his Senate bid, where he was defeated by heavy favorite Cruz by a margin of 50.9 percent to 48.3 percent.

5. A ‘PUNK’ KID

O’Rourke has said he got into punk music in eighth grade thanks to the classic Clash album “London Calling.” He and three pals formed a band called Foss, and put out a record called “The El Paso Pussycats” in 1993. O’Rourke played bass.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *