Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) appeared on Fox News Sunday and proceeded to flay President Obama and the Democrats on three fronts.
On the debt ceiling, Sen. Cruz noted that the president’s current policies of trying to tax and spend our way out of poor economic performance will not work.
“I am happy for there to be lots of new revenue. I am not happy for there to be new taxes,” Cruz said. “The best avenue for new revenue is economic growth. If the economy is sputtering along at 1%, 1.5%, 2% GDP growth, tax revenues plummet, people hurt, people are out of jobs.
Cruz continued: “If we get the economy up to the historical level since World War II, the average has been 3.3%. In the fourth year of Reagan’s presidency, our economy grew 7.2%. If we can get GDP growth up to 3, 4, 5%, that will be dramatically more revenue to pay off the deficit and debt, but the way to do it is through pro-growth policies, not new and additional taxes.”
Sen. Cruz said the United States will never default on its debt, but the president is using that as a threat: “There is plenty of revenue to service the debt and any responsible President would have stood at that podium and said, ‘Under any circumstances, whatever happens with the debt ceiling, we will always pay our debt. We will never default on the debt.’
“And the reason the president isn’t doing that is he is trying to scare people. He is trying to raise the specter of a financial apocalypse.” Cruz added that the only players in Washington who are threatening default on the debt are President Obama and Sen. Harry Reid.
Host John Roberts turned to the subject of gun control. Sen. Cruz took on politicians who have jumped since the Newtown, CT tragedy to push new gun control measures: “Every parent was horrified by what happened [in Newtown]… it takes your breath away. But within minutes, we saw politicians run out and try to exploit this tragedy, try to push their political agenda of gun control. I do not support their gun control agenda…” Cruz noted that their agenda is unconstitutional.
Cruz continued, offering a solution to one violence-related problem: “I don’t think the proposals being discussed now make sense. Look, are there things we can do? Sure. One of the things we could do is we could improve the quality of the federal database [for background checks]. Right now a lot of states, a lot of local jurisdictions are not reporting criminal convictions, not reporting mental health, barriers to ownership – and so the federal database is not nearly as good as it should be. That would be a common sense improvement…
“Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s bill would create a national gun registry. I don’t think the federal government has any business having a list of law-abiding citizens who choose to exercise their right to keep and bear arms. “
On the subject of whether former Sen. Chuck Hagel will be nominated to become the next Defense Secretary, Cruz noted that Hagel’s record on Israel is troubling, and even if confirmed, he would probably end up being a weak head of our national defense. “It’s interesting. The President seems bound and determined to proceed down this path despite the fact that Hagel’s record is very, very troubling on the nation of Israel,” Cruz said. “He has not been a friend to Israel, and in my view the United States should stand unshakably with the nation of Israel, and he has consistently advocated weakness with respect to our enemies…”
“The job of the Secretary of Defense is to be a serious, credible strength and deterrent, and unfortunately, I think weakness in a Secretary of Defense invites conflict because bullies don’t respect weakness,” Cruz said. He also said that it’s very difficult to imagine any circumstance in which he could support Hagel’s nomination.
This was Ted Cruz’s first appearance on Fox News Sunday since he was sworn in as senator. Sen. Cruz is on the Senate’s Judiciary, Commerce, Armed Services and Rules committees. He is also vice chairman of the Republican National Senatorial Committee.