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Ted Cruz takes sharp target at Beto O’Rourke at Houston rally

October 13, 2018

Several months ago, Sen. Ted Cruz carefully avoided mentioning El Paso Rep. Beto O’Rourke by name, referring only to “my Democratic opponent.”

At a Friday afternoon rally in Houston, Cruz dug into O’Rourke, harshly criticizing his voting record as he continued to paint his opponent as a socialist, a label O’Rourke has rejected.

“Every left-wing radical in the country wants to turn Texas blue,” said Cruz, R-Texas. “And they are sending their money to Comrade Beto.”

Cruz’s rally came hours after O’Rourke reported a record haul of $38.1 million during the last three months, more than triple Cruz’s $12 million total. With early voting 10 days away, Cruz warned the crowd of O’Rourke’s fundraising, calling it “dangerous.”

“That is the most money ever raised in a single quarter in any Senate race in the history of the country,” Cruz said.

Speaking to reporters before the rally, Cruz challenged O’Rourke to a debate in McAllen, where O’Rourke is scheduled to appear on a CNN town hall next week.

Cruz said his campaign initially proposed that the network host a debate, which he said O’Rourke’s campaign declined. CNN then subsequently offered to host back-to-back town halls, which Cruz’s campaign turned down.

“Beto, I’m happy to go to McAllen on the 18th, go to your town hall, and let’s have a real debate,” Cruz said, before accusing O’Rourke of trying to “hide in the protective cocoon of the media.”

Later, during the free-wheeling, half-hour rally, Cruz mostly went after O’Rourke and national Democrats, often linking the two. He called the Senate Judiciary Committee hearings for Brett Kavanaugh “the 2020 Iowa caucus for the Democrats.”

“Beto O’Rourke wants to see on the Supreme Court left-wing judicial activists, the kind of activists Hillary Clinton would appoint, who would impose their left-wing radical policy agenda on all of us,” Cruz said emphatically.

As Cruz broached the subject of Kavanaugh’s confirmation process, one member of the crowd shouted, “I like beer!” (Kavanaugh’s drinking habits became a subject of the proceedings.)

“I’m sorry sir, if you’ve had a beer, you’re ineligible for government service,” Cruz quipped.

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