Rafael Edward Cruz, Ted's father, fled from Cuba to the US in 1957 --- a year after Senator Marco Rubio's parents had also fled Fidel Castro's revolution.
Rafael Cruz was living in Houston, Texas when he and his wife had moved to Canada in the 1960s. Ted Cruz was born in 1970 in Alberta, Canada. The family returned to Houston in 1974 when Cruz was four.
Ted Cruz had obtained American citizenship as a newborn through his American mother (who was born in Delaware). Ted considers himself a "natural born citizen" because of his mother’s citizenship.
As an aside: Obama was also born to an American woman --- in Hawaii, 2 years after it became the 50th State of the Union. Whereas, Donald Trump's mother was born in Scotland. And Ted Cruz's Cuban father didn't bother becoming a US citizen until 2005 (and now runs a ministry in Texas.)
In high school Ted Cruz participated in a group called the Free Market Education Foundation, where he learned about Milton Friedman and other free-market economic philosophers. (Read why Free Markets are Fraudulent Markets)
As a teen Ted Cruz once was part of a group who called themselves the Constitutional
Corroborators. He graduated from Houston’s Second Baptist High School in 1988 and was valedictorian of his class.
Later, while attending the elite and prestigious Harvard Law School, Cruz reportedly refused to study with anyone who hadn’t spent their undergrad years at either Harvard, Princeton or Yale. One of Ted Cruz’s law-school roommates said, “He said he didn’t want anybody from minor Ivies like Penn or Brown.” (Flashback --- Rick Santorum, while on the campaign trail: "President Obama once said he wants everybody in America to go to college. What a snob.”)
And later on in 1998, while working for Charles Cooper, a partner at a conservative law firm in Washington, Cruz drafted arguments showing that
Bill Clinton's missteps qualified as exactly the sort of "high crimes and misdemeanors" the Founding Fathers had in mind as grounds for impeachment.
Through a Princeton alum, Ted Cruz became a domestic policy adviser to George W. Bush during the 2000 Bush-Cheney campaign --- when he met and married Heidi Nelson Cruz, another policy adviser in 2001. For two years Cruz worked as a lawyer in the Bush administration, serving as assistant attorney general in the Justice Department and director of policy planning at the Federal Trade Commission.
In 2003, Cruz was appointed solicitor general of Texas. In five years there, he wrote 70 briefs to the Supreme Court and argued before the court nine times. He was involved in numerous high-profile cases, including the 2003 Texas redistricting plan.
In the 2004 case of Michael Haley, who was erroneously sentenced to 14 years in prison for stealing a calculator from Walmart (when the maximum sentence was only two years), Ted Cruz acknowledged the longer sentence was an error, but nevertheless, he argued before the Supreme Court that Haley should serve the full 14 years. (The high court disagreed with Cruz, and sent the case back to the lower court, which freed Haley.)
Ted Cruz's wife, Heidi Nelson Cruz, wrote a Thank You, President Bush chapter, "Expanding Opportunity Through Free Trade." She now works as a vice president in Goldman Sachs's Houston office, managing investments for super-rich clients.
Ted Cruz also believes that George W. Bush was "one of the nation’s great presidents." It's probable that both he and his wife support free trade agreements (like NAFTA and TPP) that offshores jobs overseas and gives corporations more power over ordinary citizens.
From 2008 to 2012 Ted Cruz worked as a private appellate attorney in Houston. His rise to power in the Tea Party began in April 2011 when he declared himself a candidate for the U.S. Senate.
- In July 2012 he won the GOP nomination in a runoff with Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst.
- On November 6, 2012, he became the first Latino elected to the Senate from Texas. Then-South Carolina Republican Senator Jim DeMint’s PAC and the anti-tax and anti-government Club for Growth both opened their wallets to support Ted Cruz’s campaign. DeMint is now president of the Heritage Foundation.
Earlier this year Cruz helped kill Senate legislation that, in the wake of the massacre of 20 schoolchildren and six teachers at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., would have expanded background checks on gun buyers. Cruz said he would filibuster any bill that would restrict gun sales in any way.
It was recently reported that the Texas Republican Senator potentially violated ethics rules by failing to publicly disclose his financial relationship with a Caribbean-based holding company during the 2012 campaign.
"In an amended financial disclosure form filed Oct. 1, Cruz said he still holds a promissory note from a Kingston-based company called Caribbean Equity Partners Investment Holdings LTD, worth between $100,000 and $250,000. No company with that name is registered in Jamaica. There is however a dormant Jamaica-based private equity firm called Caribbean Equity Partners Limited of which Cruz was a founding director and preferential shareholder. The firm held $100 million in assets under management in the mid-2000s."