San Antonians react to first debate between Cruz, O'Rourke

When it was O'Rourke's turn to respond, however, he laid bare the emptiness of these words.

U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, and Democratic opponent Beto O'Rourke held a feisty debate Friday evening at Southern Methodist University in Dallas.

When Cruz tried to say O'Rourke wanted to abolish the Second Amendment, the Democrat said it wasn't so, and the candidates sniped while the moderators pleaded for them to stop and for the audience to stop hooting.

Cruz said he could sum up his position in four words: "Legal: Good". Cruz are just not going to cut it anymore. Cruz advocated for more armed police officers in schools.

"It's their prerogative", he said, before jokingly adding, "I might not like their music, either". "I will pray for anyone in harm's way, but I'll also do something about".

The debate was feisty from the opening question, which was about whether "Dreamers" - young people who were brought to the country illegally as children - should be given a path to citizenship.

The conservative USA senator from Texas is being outpaced and overshadowed by his progressive challenger, Beto O'Rourke, who is pushing to be the first Democrat in Texas to be elected to the Senate in 30 years.

In his closing statement at the debate, Cruz lumped O'Rourke in with NY congressional candidate Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, an avowed socialist, and argued that he was to the left of progressive US senators Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren.

"We can make our schools safer by having officers protect them", Cruz said.

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O'Rourke has built his campaign around healthcare, economic inequality, and resisting Trump and Cruz's immigration policies, as well as calling for some gun-control measures including uniform background checks and banning high-capacity weapons.

Black Tie Dinner co-chairs Nate Robbins and David Robinson announced Thursday night, September 20, that U.S. Senate candidate Beto O'Rourke will open this year's dinner, set for Saturday, Nov. 3, at the Sheraton Dallas Hotel. Cruz said it's a slap in the face to veterans. "That's not true", O'Rourke said.

"We are not running against anyone, we're not running against anything", O'Rourke said. "No one wants to do any of that". From April 2015 to June 2016, roughly the period when Cruz was campaigning, he missed 43.4 percent of Senate votes.

Cruz was asked whether he lost his dignity by supporting Trump after losing to him in a bruising 2016 Republican primary that saw Trump deriding the senator's wife and father.

The internet Likes may be with O'Rourke, but in terms of policy points, Cruz scored decidedly more cheers from the campus crowd. Ted Cruz for his Senate seat in November.

"I believe everyone's rights should be protected, regardless of your race, regardless of your ethnicity", Cruz said.

Even if O'Rourke doesn't, Cruz showed on Friday that he certainly does.

Additional speakers will be announced in the coming weeks.

Robert Francis O'Rourke is running against Sen.

  • Sonia Alvarado