Ted Cruz on Civil Rights

Republican Texas Senator


Worship however you like; that's the beauty of freedom

The message of liberty is profoundly subversive. The left believes in rigid conformity. We believe in diversity, free speech. You can say whatever you want no matter how dumb it is. And by the way, in Washington DC, we test that proposition. Religious liberty, you can worship however you like on your knees before Almighty God or you could worship the almighty dollar or you can worship, I don't know, pink martians. That's the beauty of freedom.
Source: Remarks by Senator Cruz at 2021 CPAC Conference , Feb 26, 2021

Allow Muslims in leadership roles in state Republican Party

Shahid Shafi identifies as a Republican because of his firm belief in small government, lower taxes and secure borders. But a group of Tarrant County Republicans will vote on whether to remove Shafi as vice-chairman of the county party because he's Muslim. Those in favor of the motion to recall Shafi, a trauma surgeon and member of the Southlake City Council, have said he doesn't represent all Tarrant County Republicans. They've also said Islamic ideologies run counter to the U.S. Constitution--an assertion many Texas GOP officials have called bigoted and Shafi himself has vehemently denied.

Several prominent Texas Republicans have rallied behind Shafi leading up to Thursday's vote--a list that includes U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz and Texas Land Commissioner George P. Bush.

Shafi's supporters compared the attacks against the surgeon to rhetoric the Ku Klux Klan used in the early 20th century against Catholics and Jews running for political office.

Source: Texas Tribune on 2020 presidential hopefuls , Jan 9, 2019

Don't empower more lawsuits by demanding equal pay

Q: Working women in this country still earn just 77% of what men earn. You've said you've been very sympathetic to our cause. I just wonder what you would do as President to try and help in this cause?

CRUZ: Well, we've got to turn the economy around for people who are struggling. The Democrats' answer to everything is more government control over wages and more empowering trial lawyers to file lawsuits. Under Barack Obama, 3.7 million women have entered poverty, and the median wage for women has dropped $733. The truth of the matter is, big government benefits the wealthy, it benefits the lobbyists, it benefits the giant corporations, and the people who are getting hammered are small businesses, it's single moms, it's Hispanics. That is who I'm fighting for, the people that Washington leaves behind.

Source: GOP `Your Money/Your Vote` 2015 CNBC 1st-tier debate , Oct 28, 2015

Supreme Court gay rights ruling undermines the Constitution

We had 2 decisions of the Supreme Court where they ignored the text of federal law. They rewrote ObamaCare, forcing that failed law on millions of Americans, and then the next day, 5 justices disregarded the text of the Constitution and purported to strike down the marriage laws of all 50 states.

I would urge everyone to read Justice Scalia's dissents. He said that these decisions are an assault on democracy. That this is 5 unelected lawyers declaring they are the rulers of 320 million Americans.

Source: Meet the Press 2015 interviews of 2016 presidential hopefuls , Jul 5, 2015

Adopt economic affirmative action instead of race-based

The debate team at Princeton [which Ted joined as a student there] is part of the America Whig-Cliosophic Society, dating back to 1765. I ended up chairing the Clios. In one of my last debates leading the Clios, I argued the position that "Princeton should end affirmative action."

We argued that, rather than discriminating based on race, Princeton should instead adopt economic affirmative action, targeting low-income prospective students. That policy would accomplish similar ends, but would be far more fair. It was striking to have that position advocated by a Hispanic man, and apparently we were persuasive: when the roughly 100 students who attended the debate voted at the end, our side prevailed by a substantial margin.

Source: A Time for Truth, by Ted Cruz, p. 60-1 , Jun 30, 2015

Insidious affirmative action: we can't make it on merit?

[While I was at Harvard], a group of conservatives on the Law Review challenged the affirmative action policy. One student editor debated, "If we abolish affirmative action, the Harvard Law Review will be nothing but rich white men."

This was said with total sincerity, and it is sadly a view shared by many well-meaning liberals. But it also proved in a single sentence what was wrong with affirmative action.

"You know what," I began, "that last comment perfectly embodies how insidious affirmative action is." The comment implied that not a single person who was not an Anglo white male deserved to be there. That we couldn't make it on merit that we couldn't rise to the top without the help of our betters.

I observed that the law review did not have affirmative action for women; the affirmative action policy was purely on race. And yet this supercilious liberal had suggested that no women would make the law review if selections were based purely on merit. What nonsense.

Source: A Time for Truth, by Ted Cruz, p. 77-8 , Jun 30, 2015

Apply 10th Amendment: states decide on gay marriage

The Tenth Amendment makes clear that there are a host of issues that should be decided by the states. Issues like marriage. Rather than the federal government or federal courts trying to impose new definitions of marriage, it should be left where the matter has been decided for two centuries: in the hands of democratically elected state legislatures. Personally, I strongly support traditional marriage between one man and one woman. A covenant ordained by God. But if people want to try to change the legal standards of civil marriage, the proper way to do so is to convince their fellow citizens. It is not for unelected judges to tear down the traditional marriage laws adopted by the people.
Source: A Time for Truth, by Ted Cruz, p.326-7 , Jun 30, 2015

Pray against a court decision legalizing same-sex marriage

Rick Santorum said he would never attend a same-sex wedding. Marco Rubio said he might attend one. Scott Walker actually went to a same-sex wedding reception, not to be confused with an actual same-sex wedding ceremony. Ted Cruz said he is firmly opposed to gay marriage, but would be comfortable if his daughter were gay.

The more conservative members of this Republican field--among them Sen. Cruz; Sen. Santorum; Gov. Bobby Jindal; and Gov. Mike Huckabee--have aggressively emphasized their opposition to same-sex marriage. For them, the issue can be used to differentiate themselves not just from Democrats but from mainstream Republicans, like Jeb Bush, who is trying to appeal to a broader audience with an eye to the general election.

Cruz said advocates of traditional marriage should "fall to our knees and pray" against a court decision legalizing same-sex marriage.

Source: N.Y. Times on 2015 Iowa Faith & Freedom Coalition summit , Apr 26, 2015

Liberals obsessed with mandatory gay marriage in 50 states

Ted Cruz has taken heat for appearing at a fundraiser at the home of two openly gay men. At that private event, he was asked how he would react if he found out one of his daughters was gay, and he said he would love her unconditionally.

Cruz vigorously defended his appearance at the fundraiser, stressing that it was primarily a pro-Israel fundraiser. "Unfortunately, our good friends in the press caricature support for traditional marriage in terms of animus," he said. "The only explanation that makes sense to reporters is that anyone who supports traditional marriage must be somehow motivated by hatred for those who are homosexuals. It's why this story seems so puzzling to the media."

Cruz said he is concerned that women like the owner of an Indiana pizzeria will suffer because they oppose gay marriage. "Scripture commands us to love everyone, & that ought to be a standard that applies across the board," he said. Cruz said liberals are obsessed with "mandatory gay marriage in all 50 states."

Source: Politico.com on 2015 Iowa Faith & Freedom Coalition summit , Apr 26, 2015

Zealotry on same-sex marriage leaves out religious liberty

Cruz said same-sex marriage had produced rabid zealotry in Democratic ranks. This ideology, he argued, was excluding people of faith: "Today's Democratic Party has become so radicalized for legalizing gay marriage in all 50 states that there is no longer any room for religious liberty," he said.

The Texas lawmaker said this stance was against America's traditional values. Religious liberty, Cruz claimed, was one of the nation's founding principles. "We were founded by men and women fleeing religious persecution," Cruz declared.

Cruz, a long-time opponent of same-sex marriage, seemingly softened his tone on gay rights earlier this week. The White House hopeful reportedly said Monday evening he would still accept one of his daughters if they became a lesbian.

Source: TheHill weblog on 2015 Iowa Faith & Freedom Coalition summit , Apr 25, 2015

Most states can ignore Supreme Court legalizing gay marriage

Following the Supreme Court's decision nationalizing same-sex marriage, Cruz told NPR that only the four states listed in the Supreme Court case (Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio and Tennessee) must abide by the ruling and that other states should ignore it. The Texas senator also said he now wants to abolish lifetime appointment to the court and subject justices to periodic election instead. Cruz believes marriage is between a man and a woman and that states should define the term "marriage" for themselves.
Source: PBS News Hour "2016 Candidate Stands" series , Mar 23, 2015

Overturn Supreme Court with anti-gay marriage Amendment

The Supreme Court refused to hear appeals from five states seeking to preserve their bans on gay marriage, clearing the way for a huge expansion in as many as 30 states and the District of Columbia. The states affected by Monday's action were Wisconsin, Indiana, Oklahoma, Utah, and Virginia. State officials had appealed lower court rulings to preserve their bans. Couples in six other states--Colorado, Kansas, North Carolina, South Carolina, West Virginia, and Wyoming--could get married soon, since those states would be bound by the same appellate rulings that have been on hold. Challenges are pending in 20 other states.

Many conservative GOP candidates slammed the Supreme Court's rulings--Cruz vowed to introduce a constitutional amendment that would prevent federal courts or government from voiding state laws on marriage--but others considered the more strategic implications.

Mike Huckabee charged that the GOP "establishment" has waved the "white flag of surrender" on gay marriage.

Source: NewsMax 2014 coverage of 2016 presidential hopefuls , Oct 9, 2014

UN Treaty on Disabilities threatens US sovereignty

Even before taking office, Cruz made his influence felt in the Senate when he was invited to join the weekly lunch of the Senate Republican caucus on December 4, 2012--the day the full Senate was debating the United Nations treaty on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. It seemed a fairly uncontroversial issue until Cruz expressed his opposition: "I was a newly elected senator who hadn't even sworn in yet, but I [said] the issues of U.S. sovereignty resonate powerfully with the American people," Cruz recounted.

To lobby for passage of the treaty, former Republican majority leader Bob Dole was brought in a wheelchair. Cruz explained, "I personally have been passionate about protecting U.S. sovereignty, that our laws should reflect American values, and not be governed by the laws or tribunals of foreign nations or foreign institutions. I urged my soon-to-be colleagues to protect U.S. sovereignty, and ultimately they did so.

Source: Cruzing to the White House, by Mario Broes, p. 73-4 , Mar 7, 2014

Opposes gay pride parades and opposes gay marriage

At least twice while serving as Dallas' mayor, Republican Tom Leppert marched in Dallas' gay pride parade. Opponent Ted Cruz has hammered Leppert for joining the marches. Cruz said, "When a mayor of a city chooses twice to march in a parade celebrating gay pride that's a statement and it's not a statement I agree with."

Leppert says government shouldn't be involved in deciding whether gay partners have legal benefits given spouses which might include property inheritance or making medical decisions. Cruz says states should decide those benefits.

Gay rights has become an important test in this primary contest as hardcore Texas Republicans demand candidates take more socially conservatwive stands.

Source: Texas Public Radio coverage of 2012 Texas Senate debate , Feb 23, 2012

One-man-one-woman marriage is building block of society

Ted Cruz has worked hard in defense of traditional marriage, including his intervention in a case protecting Texas marriage laws. In addition, he has fought on the federal level to defend marriage between one man and one woman as the fundamental building block of society.

When a state court granted a divorce to two homosexual men who had gotten a civil union in Vermont, Cruz intervened in defense of the Texas marriage laws, which successfully led to the court judgment being vacated;

Source: Campaign website, www.tedcruz.org, "Issues" , Jul 17, 2011

Disallow Ku Klux Klan from participating in Adopt-A-Highway

The Declaration of Independence states that "all men are created equal." Ted Cruz has worked to ensure that groups that spout hatred and bigotry are not provided privileges that encourage their venomous beliefs.

Cruz authored a US Supreme Court amicus brief on behalf of 10 states in Rahn v. Robb, urging the Supreme Court to grant certiorari and reverse a decision of the Eight Circuit allowing the Ku Klux Klan to participate in Kansas's "Adopt-A-Highway" program.

Source: Campaign website, www.tedcruz.org, "Issues" , Jul 17, 2011

Voted NO on reauthorizing the Violence Against Women Act.

Congressional Summary:
    Amends the Violence Against Women Act of 1994 (VAWA) to add or expand definitions of several terms used in such Act, including :
  1. "culturally specific services" to mean community-based services that offer culturally relevant and linguistically specific services and resources to culturally specific communities;
  2. "personally identifying information" with respect to a victim of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, or stalking;
  3. "underserved populations" as populations that face barriers in accessing and using victim services because of geographic location, religion, sexual orientation or gender identity; and
  4. "youth" to mean a person who is 11 to 24 years old.

Opponent's Argument for voting No (The Week; Huffington Post, and The Atlantic): House Republicans had objected to provisions in the Senate bill that extended VAWA's protections to lesbians, gays, immigrants, and Native Americans. For example, Rep. Bill Johnson (R-OH) voted against the VAWA bill because it was a "politically–motivated, constitutionally-dubious Senate version bent on dividing women into categories by race, transgender politics and sexual preference." The objections can be grouped in two broadly ideological areas--that the law is an unnecessary overreach by the federal government, and that it represents a "feminist" attack on family values. The act's grants have encouraged states to implement "mandatory-arrest" policies, under which police responding to domestic-violence calls are required to make an arrest. These policies were intended to combat the too-common situation in which a victim is intimidated into recanting an abuse accusation. Critics also say VAWA has been subject to waste, fraud, and abuse because of insufficient oversight.

Reference: Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act; Bill S. 47 ; vote number 13-SV019 on Feb 12, 2013

Supports defining traditional marriage.

Cruz supports the CC Voters Guide question on same-sex marriage

Christian Coalition publishes a number of special voter educational materials including the Christian Coalition Voter Guides, which provide voters with critical information about where candidates stand on important faith and family issues. The Christian Coalition Voters Guide summarizes candidate stances on the following topic: "Maintaining current federal law defining marriage as one man and one woman"

Source: Christian Coalition Voter Guide 12-CC-q3b on Oct 31, 2012

Sponsored state definition of marriage supersedes federal gay marriage.

Cruz sponsored State Marriage Defense Act

Congressional summary::Prohibits any interpretation of US administrative agencies, as applied with respect to individuals domiciled in a state of the United States:

  1. the term "marriage" from including any relationship that the state does not recognize as a marriage; and
  2. the term "spouse" from including an individual who is a party to a relationship that is not recognized as a marriage by that state.

Opponent's argument against (CNN.com Feb. 8 report on Attorney General Eric Holder's action which prompted this bill): In a major milestone for gay rights, the US government expanded recognition of same-sex marriages in federal legal matters, including bankruptcies, prison visits and survivor benefits. "It is the Justice Department's policy to recognize lawful same-sex marriages as broadly as possible, to ensure equal treatment for all members of society regardless of sexual orientation," Attorney General Eric Holder said. The federal expansion includes 34 states where same-sex marriage isn't legal. For example, a same-sex couple legally married in Massachusetts can now have a federal bankruptcy proceeding recognized in Alabama, even though it doesn't allow same-sex marriages.

Proponent's argument in favor (Washington Post Feb. 13 reporting on Sen. Ted Cruz): If passed, the bill would cede marriage definition to states for federal purposes, which would effectively reverse the gains same-sex couples made after the Defense of Marriage Act was overturned by the Supreme Court in June 2013. Cruz said, "I support traditional marriage. The federal government has tried to re-define marriage, and to undermine the constitutional authority of each state to define marriage consistent with the values of its citizens. The Obama Administration should not be trying to force gay marriage on all 50 states."

Source: H.R.3829 & S. 2024 14-S2024 on Feb 12, 2014

Respect faith-based opposition to same-sex marriage.

Cruz co-sponsored respecting faith-based opposition to same-sex marriage

Congressional Summary: The First Amendment Defense Act (FADA) prohibits the federal government from taking discriminatory action against a person on the basis that such person believes or acts in accordance with a religious belief or moral conviction that:

  1. marriage is or should be recognized as the union of one man and one woman, or
  2. sexual relations are properly reserved to such a marriage.
Legal Argument Opposed: [Secular.org]: "The stated purpose of FADA is to protect the tax-exempt status, government contract, or any other federal benefit of those who do not comply with the Supreme Court's same-sex marriage ruling. This act's true impact would allow for sweeping, taxpayer-funded discrimination against same-sex couples and their children--all under the guise of religious liberty. FADA would completely eviscerate the historic nondiscrimination Executive Order that President Obama signed last summer that prohibits federal contractors from engaging in discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity. The First Amendment protects freedom of religion and freedom from religion, not the special privileges of the religiously affiliated at the expense of the fundamental rights of other Americans."

Political Argument Opposed: [ACLU, July 20, 2015]: The House of Representatives & leading anti-LGBT organizations are pushing a bill--disingenuously titled the First Amendment Defense Act--that would open the door to unprecedented taxpayer-funded discrimination against LGBT people, single mothers, and unmarried couples. This bill would

Source: H.R.2802 16-HR2802 on Jun 17, 2015

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