On the eve of a Republican presidential debate and just weeks before bellwether primary races, Ted Cruz is facing tough questions about a failure to disclose loans obtained during his 2012 Senate run, “a potential violation of federal election rules,” reports CNN.
A campaign spokeswoman told The New York Times that Cruz’s failure to disclose loans from Goldman Sachs and Citibank was “inadvertent” and the oversight would be corrected.
Cruz, a leading candidate for his party’s presidential nomination, has faced tough questions as he ascends in polls ahead of primary races in Iowa and New Hampshire. Besides the loans, he is also in the midst of brushing back questions about his ability to run for president because he was born in Canada to his American mother.
A review of personal financial disclosures that Mr. Cruz filed later with the Senate does not find a liquidation of assets that would have accounted for all the money he spent on his campaign. What it does show, however, is that in the first half of 2012, Ted and Heidi Cruz obtained the low-interest loan from Goldman Sachs, as well as another one from Citibank. The loans totaled as much as $750,000 and eventually increased to a maximum of $1 million before being paid down later that year. There is no explanation of their purpose.
Neither loan appears in reports the Ted Cruz for Senate Committee filed with the Federal Election Commission, in which candidates are required to disclose the source of money they borrow to finance their campaigns. Other campaigns have been investigated and fined for failing to make such disclosures, which are intended to inform voters and prevent candidates from receiving special treatment from lenders. There is no evidence that the Cruzes got a break on their loans.
News about the loans comes ahead of Thursday’s Republican presidential primary debate hosted by Fox Business at the North Charleston Coliseum and Performing Arts Center in North Charleston, South Carolina. Besides Cruz, participants will include Donald Trump, Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio, Ben Carson, Chris Christie, Jeb Bush and John Kasich.
Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul and former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina have been dropped from the lineup on the main stage, the result of low poll ratings.
Ted Cruz sits atop the Republican pack in Iowa with just 19 days until the caucuses, but Donald Trump is just 3 percentage points behind, a new Des Moines Register/Bloomberg Politics Iowa Poll shows.
Over the last month, Cruz’s poll numbers have taken a 6-point hit as he confronts the crucible of being Iowa’s GOP front-runner, under attack from the Trump bazooka and the ethanol industry. But likely caucusgoers’ opinions of the ultraconservative Texas U.S. senator remain sky high (76 percent view him favorably).
As Trump works to regain Iowa and widen his lead, he will likely hammer away at the failed loan disclosure, a mistake the Cruz campaign acknowledges and is working to correct. Still, do you think the issue will hurt Cruz’s chances for the nomination?