April 22, 2004


Mrs. Kerry's secrecy (Robert Novak, April 22, 2004, Townhall)

John Kerry, after more than 10 years in the Senate, was nearly broke in May 1995, facing a daunting 1996 election test against popular Republican Gov. William Weld when he married the widow of the richest U.S. senator. The late Republican Sen. John Heinz of Pennsylvania left his wife, Teresa, $600 million. Kerry's net worth, according to his official disclosure submitted in 1995, ranged from a plus-$34,995 down to a minus-$130,000.

In January 1995, Mrs. Heinz paid $1.7 million cash for the shell of a town house on Boston's tony Beacon Hill, and restoration brought its value to nearly $3 million (though that figure is much higher today). She then transferred ownership of half the house to her new husband, and the mansion became the engine financing Kerry's campaigns.

Running behind Weld in 1996, Kerry loaned his campaign $900,000 by mortgaging the house. By Election Day, he had loaned it $1.7 million and was $2.1 million personally in debt. That began a laborious process of paying off his debt, including the 1996 mortgage, which was completed in 1999. Kerry was then positioned to dip into the Beacon Hill mansion for a future attempt to be president.

In December of last year, Kerry's campaign treasury was empty and his candidacy going nowhere. He then loaned his campaign $6.4 million by mortgaging his one-half share of the Boston home. Without that, Kerry's presidential bid probably could not have been revived.

They're not called cabana boys because they own cabanas.

Posted by Orrin Judd at April 22, 2004 6:33 PM

Not only doesn't Kerry own the cabana, but according to his statement today he doesn't even own his own vehicle. Wonder if Teresa even had an extra set of car keys made for the guzzly old thing...

Posted by: John at April 22, 2004 11:42 PM

I don't get this unless it's just personal rancor.

I know next to nothing about Kerry's financial/marital affairs and care even less.

But I thought the Christian concept of marriage was helpmeet. Was I wrong?

Posted by: Harry Eagar at April 23, 2004 2:18 AM

No, Harry. But you're missing the point. It's one thing for Teresa H. Kerry to help her husband financially; it's another thing for John Kerry to be essentially leeching off her wealth, which is what all this that we've been seeing over the past months seems to add up to. That's why Orrin calls him the "cabana boy".

Posted by: Joe at April 23, 2004 5:27 AM

I have no problem with cabana boyism--I am one.

But, for one thing, if they intentionally overestimated the value of the home so that he could float a bigger loan to himself it's presumably illegal.

Posted by: oj at April 23, 2004 8:57 AM

Kerry and Heinz got married because a civil union would have required them to intermix their finances.

Posted by: Raoul Ortega at April 23, 2004 12:20 PM

After posting a comment based on M*A*S*H to another thread, I keep thinking of Hawkeye's summary of Frank Burns:

"He married for money; he became a doctor for money..."

Posted by: Ken at April 23, 2004 12:48 PM

I still don't get the cabana-boy slams.

If he's a crook, he's a crook. My wife and I have commingled our assets. So what?

Posted by: Harry Eagar at April 23, 2004 2:13 PM

Yes, the point is that the Kerry's haven't.

Did you make your wife sign a prenup?

Posted by: oj at April 23, 2004 2:20 PM

So what? What business it is of yours?

My wife and I started with total current assets of $4.95 and a box of Spic n Span. We didn't think we needed a prenup.

Posted by: Harry Eagar at April 23, 2004 4:56 PM

If you married her now when you have savings would you make her sign one?

Posted by: oj at April 23, 2004 7:04 PM


Posted by: Harry Eagar at April 23, 2004 10:33 PM

Why not?

Posted by: oj at April 24, 2004 1:07 AM

Because I'm not much interested in money.

Posted by: Harry Eagar at April 25, 2004 12:53 AM

Yes, you're a better man than Mr. or Mrs. Kerry. That's the point.

Posted by: oj at April 25, 2004 12:56 AM

If the gender roles were turned would this even be an issue? We would all be looking upon senator kerry as a caring husband, taking such interest and giving such support toward the career of his wife.

Posted by: Tara at June 17, 2004 1:00 AM


Posted by: oj at June 17, 2004 1:09 AM