Sen. Ted Cruz, following an overwhelming primary win, acknowledged Wednesday that the “extreme left” is angry and energized, but there will still a strong turn out for conservatives in the Texas elections on Tuesday.
“There’s no doubt the extreme left right now is energized,” the Texas Republican told CNN’s “New Day” host Chris Cuomo. “They are angry. They hate the president. We’re seeing that in the fundraising numbers for Democrats all across the country. We are seeing that in turnout.”
Early vote numbers were also “quite good” for Democrats in Texas, who voted for Rep. Beto O’Rourke to face Cruz in November.
“At the end of the night, I was very gratified to win over 85 percent of the vote to win 1.3 million votes, which is more than double what my Democratic opponent got,” said Cruz.
“That doesn’t quite fit the narrative that a lot of folks in the media want to tell because every two years, every four years Texas is always fixing to turn blue. But the nice value of it is in Texas at least there are a lot more conservatives than liberals.”
Even with the extra votes, Cruz said his campaign “absolutely” is taking the race for his reelection seriously.
“We take nothing for granted,” he said. “I will do everything I can to continue to earn the support of every one of 28 million Texansacross the state. And I will say for the voters there is a clear contrast, a clear contrast on substance, policy and ideas.”
O’Rourke, Cruz continued, embraces positions like open borders, amnesty, and aggressive gun control, all of which to not meet the “views of the vast majority of Texans.”
Cruz said he’s also not worried about poll numbers that put him at around a 40 percent approval rating, which he blamed on polls that oversample Democrats.
“We all remember back four years ago when Wendy Davis was the next big thing in the national media,” said Cruz.
“She filibustered and supported late term abortion. The national media loved her. On primary day she lost in the Democratic primaries either 22 or 23 counties, all in south Texas against an unknown Democrat with no money at all.”
O’Rourke, he said, won barely 60 percent of the Democratic primary, and lost South Texas badly.
“I think that underscores that most Texans look at a candidate who brags about his F rating from the NRA,” said Cruz. “Just a couple weeks ago he tweeted out to the world how proud he was to have an F rating from the NRA.”
Cruz also appeared on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” program, where he discussed President Donald Trump’s call for tariffs on foreign steel and aluminum, saying he thinks it is “a mistake.”
“We’ll end up costing more jobs than will be saved,” Cruz said. “That doesn’t even factor in. It could hurt farmers, manufacturers. To be honest the president has heard from most senators on this.”
Cruz said he does not think anything could be done in the Senate concerning Trump’s tariffs.
“I have tried to do what I can to encourage the voices that want to expand free trade,” said Cruz. “It would be good for Mexico and it would be great for Texas and this country and produce thousands of jobs here.”
Meanwhile, Cruz said the relationship between himself and President Donald Trump is a “very good working relationship” getting agenda items such as tax reform and Obamacare reform measures through.
“I’m in a fairly unusual position because I’m able to speak to credibility and to moderates, to the administration and to try to bring everyone together and say what’s the common ground?” he said.