Saturday, April 1, 2017

From Punker To Congressman


Robert Francis "Beto" O'Rourke is the former guitarist and vocalist for Foss and current Congressman in Texas. Foss was a 90's El Paso Punk Rock and Emo band that included Cedric Bixler-Zavala, who now plays in the Grammy Award-winning Prog-Rock band The Mars Volta and previously in the Punk Rock band At the Drive-In.  Foss released a self-titled demo and a 7” record entitled The El Paso Pussycats in which Beto is pictured wearing a floral patterned dress.

Beto O'Rourke was born and raised in El Paso, Texas, where he currently resides. He received a bachelor's degree in English literature from Columbia University.

Pat O'Rourke, Beto's father, served as El Paso county commissioner and then county judge in the 1980s. Pat O'Rourke was a popular longtime Democrat before switching parties in 1996, when he unsuccessfully ran for Congress as a Republican.

Beto was arrested in the 1990s on burglary and drunken driving charges. O'Rourke says the burglary arrest happened after he tripped an alarm while jumping a fence at the University of Texas-El Paso in 1995 but prosecutors declined the case. He said he received deferred adjudication on the drunken driving arrest and was not convicted. 

In 1999, O'Rourke founded Stanton Street Technology, an internet services and software company that develops websites and software.

 He served on El Paso's city council from 2005 until 2011.

In the 2012 Texas primary Beto ousted a powerful incumbent for the Democratic nomination in Texas' 16th District. In the May 2012 primary he defeated eight-term U.S. Rep. Silvestre Reyes, the former chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence. President Barack Obama had endorsed Reyes and former President Bill Clinton made a campaign stop on the incumbent's behalf. He was contrasted with former Congressman Reyes in his support for LGBT rights and drug liberalization. Reyes ran television smear ads recounting O'Rourke's drunken driving arrest and showing a cellphone video of O'Rourke rolling around on a barroom floor. He defeated his Republican opponent, Barbara Carrasco, in the general election with 65 percent of the vote. O'Rourke won re-election in 2014 with 67% of the vote.

Beto's estimated net worth by year:
2011-$6,791,541
2012-$7,568,536
2014-$9,502,513

Growth from 2011 to 2012: 11%
Growth from 2012 to 2014: 20%
Comparatively, the American citizen experienced a median yearly decline in net worth of -0.94%.

In October 2015, O'Rourke announced his bid for a third term in 2016. He won the Democratic primary and defeated his Green and Libertarian opponents in the general election.

On the evening of June 22, 2016, O'Rourke participated in the sit-in in the House of Representatives that attempted to force a vote on gun control legislation. When the Republicans ordered C-SPAN to turn off its normal coverage of the chamber, O'Rourke and Representative Scott Peters transmitted images by cell phone to social media for C-SPAN to broadcast.

Committee assignments
  • Committee on Armed Services
    • Subcommittee on Emerging Threats and Capabilities
    • Subcommittee on Strategic Forces
  • Committee on Veterans' Affairs
    • Subcommittee on Disability Assistance and Memorial Affairs
    • Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations

On March 31 2017 O'Rourke annouced that he would be running in 2018 in an effort to unseat Ted Cruz, becoming the first Democratic candidate to enter the race.

Foss band page

Foss live

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