American politician and Democrat, Beto O’rourke represented Texas 16th District from 2013 to 2019. He, however, garnered widespread fame following his senatorial challenge of Ted Cruz, and his bid for the US 2020 presidential race as a Democratic candidate. With his far-reaching door-to-door campaign style and record-breaking fundraisers, Beto has endeared himself to many hearts across America and the entire globe.
However, O’rourke is not only a politician; the Texan native wears many hats as he is also a versatile businessman, an accomplished musician, and a known author. Amid his successful career in both business and politics, the American politician still finds the time to be a good father and a caring husband.
Beto O’rourke Had a Brief Career in Music During His College Years
Beto O’rourke’s career in the music industry was quite brief; it was while he was still at El Paso that the young musician joined his debut band Swipe. Upon leaving El Paso to attend Columbia University, New York, his band started staging shows at New York clubs and bars. They even served as an opening act for the Olympia, Washington-based punk band Fitz of Depression on one occasion.
O’rourke became engrossed in punk music in his teens after he was introduced to Bad Brains. He studied some musical instruments (especially bass) alongside some friends, Arlo Klahr and Mike Stevens. They formed a trio at Columbia University in 1991 and recruited vocalist Cedric Bixler-Zavala, with whom they launched a new band, Foss (Cedric Bixler-Zavala eventually became the vocalist for At the Drive-In and The Mars Volta)
The band engaged in tours around Canada and the US during the summer and eventually dropped their self-titled demo, as well as a 7-inch record called The El Paso Pussycats on Western Breed Records in 1993. Foss later launched two other bands, a cover band called The Sheeps and a rock group called Fragile Gang. Beto O’rourke also handled drums for the Swedes band.
After College, He Delved Into Business And Real Estate
After he graduated from college, he worked at his uncle’s internet service provider company, but before then, he was engaged as an art mover and a live-in caretaker. Beto later became a proofreader at H. W. Wilson Company, where he indulged himself writing stories and songs during his leisure time. Although the former musician is an English Literature graduate, his works usually revolve around computer technology, including software and web designing.
Beto O’rourke delved into business, mainly investing in real estate. He also worked in a variety of positions for different firms, including his mother’s furniture shop. In 2000, Beto established an internet and software service company in El Paso, which he named Stanton Street Technology Group. When he failed in his attempt to secure a loan for the startup, the young businessman’s dad came to his rescue with a $20,000 loan secured on his behalf. The emerging entrepreneur’s first client was his mum’s furniture business.
The company flourished under the watch of his wife and also published Stanton Street – an online newspaper, with a focus on restaurant reviews, entertainment, and arts review, as well as opinion columns that Beto modeled on other periodicals such as New York Press and The Village Voice. The company later made marketing agreements with the likes of KTSM-TV, which allowed them to share content and TV ads.
In addition to his profitable businesses, O’rourke was also committed to civic and non-profit organizations. Some of the groups he was involved with include the Rotary Club, Center Against Sexual and Family Violence, and United Way. He was also a board member of the Institute for Policy and Economic Development, as well as the El Paso Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.
Beto Kicked Off His Political Career In 2005
Before he emerged on the political scene, Beto used to accompany his dad to political events like campaigns. However, the younger O’rourke was the complete opposite of his father, Pat, who was known to be charismatic and outgoing. Pat would usually nudge his shy and awkward son at these events, reminding him to introduce himself to people that matter.
According to Beto, even though he never enjoyed it then, now he can look back and bless the experience as it served as a propeller. Beto O’rourke began his political career in 2005 when he was elected to the El Paso City Council. On leaving the council in 2011, he won the representative seat for Texas’ 16th congressional district later in 2012, retaining the position until 3rd January 2019.
During the 2018 representative/senatorial elections, O’rourke competed against Republican Senator Ted Cruz, losing the election with a narrow margin of only 2.6%. He would have become the first Democrat to represent Texas in the Senate for 30 years, had he won the election. Few months after the loss, precisely on 14th March 2019, Beto launched his campaign for the 2020 US presidential seat. However, he dropped after failing to get significant support.
I am running to serve you as the next president. The challenges we face are the greatest in living memory. No one person can meet them on their own. Only this country can do that, and only if we build a movement that includes all of us. Say you're in: https://t.co/EKLdkVET2u pic.twitter.com/lainXyvG2n
— Beto O'Rourke (@BetoORourke) March 14, 2019
In 2011, Beto O’rourke co-authored a book, Dealing Death and Drugs, alongside Susie Byrd.
Meet Beto O’rourke’ Wife And Kids
Beto O’rourke married Amy Hoover Sanders, daughter of a Texas real estate mogul, on September 24, 2005, few months after he won a seat in El Paso City Council. Their wedding took place at the bride’s family ranch in Lamy, New Mexico. The couple met ten months earlier on a blind date set up by a friend.
Amy Sanders studied Psychology and is a teacher and educationist by profession. Among her numerous other ventures, Amy served as the president of Beto’s Stanton Street Technology Company from 2013. She, however, relinquished the position in 2017 to devote more time to her husband’s political cause. Interestingly, Amy’s father, Bill Sanders was the one who introduced Beto’s mother to his father after previously dating her.
Beto has three children with his wife – two boys and a girl, namely Ulysses, Henry, and Molly. The family of five resides in El Paso, Texas.
Beto O’Rourke faced criticisms when he made an off-the-cuff remark about Amy doing most of the child-rearing work during his first campaign in Keokuk, Iowa.
Here’s What We Know About His Parents And Family
Regarding his biological family, Beto O’rourke comes from a Catholic and political family. With two younger sisters, Beto is the first child and only son of his parents, Melissa Martha and Patrick “Pat” Francis O’Rourke. While his father was a politician/public office holder in El Paso County, his mother managed a high-end furniture shop. Most prominent among Pat O’rourke’s political offices were El Paso County Commissioner (1978-1982) and El Paso County Judge (1982-1986).
Unfortunately, Beto’s father, who is a cycling lover, died in a road accident on the 3rd day of July 2001. It happened that a car hit him from behind while he was riding on his bicycle. Thrown about 70 feet by the accident, he sustained severe head injuries that claimed his life at the spot.