Ted Cruz clearly felt at home at the NRA’s annual convention, and not just because he grew up in Houston.
The Texas Senator was introduced with a video featuring some edited highlights from his showdown with California Democrat Diane Feinstein during a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing in which he went on at length about the Constitution. (Including the one that prompted Feinstein to inform him curtly that she was “not a 6th grader.”)
The Constitution was the focal point of his speech to the NRA, in which he derided the president and so-called “Obama liberals” for infringing on the Bill of Rights in various (if unspecified) ways.
“For some reason Obama liberals want to disregard the First Amendment and take away our rights to speak in political speech,” he said, echoing similar remarks made by Wayne LaPierre earlier. Neither explained how the president or liberals were taking away anyone’s right to political speech.
“For some reason Obama liberals want to disregard the Fourth Amendment and Fifth Amendment,” Cruz continued, “and have the power to use drones against U.S. citizens.” Cruz must have missed when PolitiFact debunked this faulty claim and not seen the letter that Attorney General Eric Holder wrote to Rand Paul in which he cleared the issue up.
He also complained that the president was violating the Tenth Amendment by implementing Obamacare. The Supreme Court apparently didn’t see it that way.
But the crowd at the George R. Brown Convention Center in downtown Houston ate it up.
Cruz was cheered when he talked about Joe Biden’s plan to renew the gun control fight; he told the assembled audience, “I am looking at an army.”
He closed his speech by challenging the vice president to an hour-long debate on how to stop crime.
“If Vice President Biden really believes the facts are on his side,” he said, “then I would think he would welcome the opportunity to talk about the sources, the causes of violent crime, who’s carrying it out, and how we can do everything humanly possible to stop it.”
Given that the NRA released a statement blasting Biden within minutes of his last meeting with the organization, and Ted Cruz’s habits of berating his colleagues, the vice president might have more productive ways to spend his time.