Everyone who speaks in public runs the risk of coming across a heckler. Politicians are particularly at risk during town halls and campaign stops.
When Senator Ted Cruz made a campaign stop at Moondoggy’s Pizza & Pub in Amarillo, Texas, he also was met with a heckler. However, how he handled it showed sheer brilliance.
During the stop, Cruz talked about what he had done in Congress. Additionally, he spent a little time comparing and contrasting where he and his Democrat opponent, Congressman Beto O’Rourke, stand on various issues.
When he got onto the topic of the Second Amendment, one member of the audience shouted an often-made statement, “Come and get it!” To that, the heckler shouted, “Oh, we will!”
No stranger to hecklers, Cruz hit back with pure Texas. “You want to stand the entire election on the Second Amendment, “Come and take it,” and the Beto O’Rourke supporter screams, ‘Oh, we will.'”
He continued, “You want to sum this entire election up, that is one approach. That is one conversation. The question is, is Texas gonna stand up and defend our freedom?”
The already rowdy crowd went wild, quickly giving Cruz a rousing standing ovation. Almost everyone in the visible crowd stood, even an older gentleman who had difficulty doing so. Those who did not stand were still applauding, nonetheless.
Cruz, who has an “A” rating from the NRA, noted that O’Rourke has recieved an “F” rating from the group. O’Rourke himself shared news of that rating back in February:
Last NRA rating: F
Total NRA contributions: $0https://t.co/PGtWuzzZ2t
— Beto O'Rourke (@BetoORourke) February 25, 2018
According to the Dallas News, “Texas is one of the most heavily armed states in America, but the issue of gun control hasn’t historically been a top issue at the ballot box.” However, the battle between Cruz and O’Rourke could change that.
During a call with reporters, Cruz shared his thoughts on why this issue of gun control matters to voters.
“Congressman O’Rourke is a vocal proponent of gun control and restricting the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding citizens,” Cruz said. “But those anti-gun views are not reflective of the values of Texans.”
Earlier in his speech, Cruz spoke about Democrat intentions to turn Texas into a blue state. Back in July, his father, Rafael Cruz, while stumping for his son in Tyler, Texas, addressed that very issue, according to the Tyler Morning Telegraph:
“America is at a crossroads, and Texas is ground zero. The Democrats are doing all they can to turn Texas blue. We are not going to let that happen.”
According to the Weatherford Democrat, Rafael had said that and more back in May, while at a Parker County Conservatives event, “If all of a sudden Texas starts to trend purple or even become blue … we are the firewall for the Republicans. So we must turn out high levels of Republican votes to be able to do that, it is the firewall.”
Texas was not always a red, or conservative, state. According to PBS’ Frontline, for more than 100 years, up until the late 1990s, the state had been Democrat-controlled. It wasn’t until then that “Republicans (were) holding all the popularly elected statewide offices.”
Texas has 38 electoral college votes, which is more than any other state in the union, with the exception of California, which has 55.
Additionally, Texas has 36 representatives in the House, giving the state a lot of power in Congress.
Whatever the issue that drives Texas voters in November, it is understandable why both Democrats and Republicans would want to have the power in the state. Power in Texas becomes power elsewhere.
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