Ted Cruz Received Houston Rockets Playoff Tickets Worth $8,000 From Top Donor in 2018

WASHINGTON — One of Sen. Ted Cruz’s top campaign donors gave the senator Houston Rockets tickets worth nearly $8,000 last year, according to financial disclosures filed this week.One ticket worth $5,175 let Cruz attend Game 7 of the Western Conference finals, in which the Golden State Warriors knocked the Rockets out of the NBA playoffs on May 28, 2018. Robert Marling, chairman of Woodforest Financial Group, gave Cruz that ticket, and another worth $2,588 for a Rockets game last December. Marling donated more than $1.3 million to political action committees that supported Cruz’s 2016 presidential bid, according to federal campaign records. He has also donated $10,200 to Cruz’s Senate campaign and $24,300 directly to his presidential campaign.Cruz’s campaign manager in his reelection last year and his 2016 presidential race, Jeff Roe, also gave him a Rockets ticket valued at $5,000 in May 2018.The gifts, reported on annual disclosure forms filed on Monday, did not violate any Senate ethics rules, according to Roll Call, which first reported on the tickets. Senators are allowed to accept gifts on the basis of a personal friendship, as long as they receive written approval from the Senate Ethics Committee for gifts worth more than $250.The committee did not respond to a request for comment.“Sen. Cruz filed his required ethics disclosure in accordance with all applicable rules and guidance from the Senate Ethics Committee,” Cruz’s communications director Lauren Aronson said in a statement.Marling’s other donations include $11,200 to President Donald Trump, $2,800 to Rep. Kevin Brady of The Woodlands, and $5,000 to Roy Moore, the former Alabama chief justice who lost a 2017 special election for the U.S. Senate after reports of sexual misconduct with minors.Minutes before the Game 7 matchup started, in Cruz’s hometown of Houston, he posted a photo of himself on Twitter. The Rockets lost 101-92 and detractors accused him of jinxing the team with his presence, using the hashtag #CruzCurse.  Continue reading...

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