As Donald Trump celebrated a resounding win in the New York primary, Sen. Ted Cruz held a Pennsylvania kickoff event focused on downplaying Trump’s big home state win and looking forward in the “year of the outsider” with a speech entitled “America is at a point of choosing.”
The speech invoked Reagan, JFK, Bernie Sanders, Bill Gates, Steve Jobs and revised Barack Obama’s “yes we can” to “yes we will.” Cruz’s rallying cry echoed a title retrospectively given to the 1964 speech given by Ronald Reagan in support of candidate Barry Goldwater, “A Time For Choosing.”
Cruz’s speech rang of a vision forward led not by Cruz, but by the people and called on Americans to unite. “The question is not whether all Americans can or will agree on a majority of issues all of the time. The question is whether a majority of Americans are hungry to rally around a set of principles larger than any single issue that a politician may use to divide us,” Cruz said. “Let us unite…on the things that have always made us great.”
Cruz’s New York loss breaks a string of wins Cruz has been touting in recent weeks. Polling leading up to the election predicted a big win for Trump. Cruz scored a big primary election win in Utah the same day that Trump won in Arizona’s presidential preference contest. Cruz won the lion’s share of delegates chosen in North Dakota and Colorado. Those two states did not hold primary elections or caucuses. Cruz won 14 delegates at the Wyoming GOP convention on Saturday to add to his March 12 caucus win for 9 of 12 available delegates. The Texas senator also won in Wisconsin’s primary election, taking away 36 delegates to Trump’s six.
Trump has been hammering away at the process he has called a “rigged delegate system.”
Cruz has been firing back, lauding his winning streak. He defended his Colorado win during a California campaign rally stating the 65,000 people voted. He has since declared that between the five states 1.3 million people have voted. A Cruz campaign representative told Breitbart News that that includes the 65,000 number for Colorado, an estimated 1,500 in Wyoming and 1,500 in North Dakota. The Cruz campaign attributed the voter estimates to the state’s respective Republican parties. Election totals show over 177,000 voted in Utah and over one million voted in Wisconsin.
The Tuesday New York election night event billed as Cruz’s Pennsylvania kickoff included Cruz surrogates Utah Sen. Mike Lee and former presidential candidate Carly Fiorina. Cruz will campaign in Pennsylvania and New Jersey on Wednesday. Fiorina will campaign for Cruz in Lancaster, Lebanon and Reading, Pennsylvania on Wednesday.
Cruz full speech courtesy of Cruz campaign:
Thank you so very much Carly for your incredible friendship and leadership. God bless New York and God bless the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
I am so excited to share with you what America has learned over the past few months.
And it has nothing to do with a politician tonight winning his home state.
It has everything to do with what we’ve seen in the towns and faces that have been weathered with trouble, joblessness, and fear. It is what we learned looking at the factories that have been shuttered and the hearts that are closing.
We have learned that America is at a point of choosing.
The media will say it is about choosing a president.
But it really isn’t.
Our real choice is personal, and every generation must make the same choice.
Will we continue to live in the past with what we know no longer works, or will we move forward to a new and better place?
The people in state after state have made it clear. They cry out for a new path.
This is the year of the outsider.
I am an outsider, Bernie Sanders is an outsider.
Both with the same diagnosis, but both with very different paths to healing.
Millions of Americans have chosen one of these outsiders. Our campaigns don’t find our fuel in bundlers and special interests, but rather directly from the people. The wide-eyed youth of any age that haven’t given up on the hope that tomorrow can and will be better.
Ronald Reagan and Jack Kennedy were outsiders.
They both represented a whole new vision and vibrancy.
A new generation of ideas.
Jack Kennedy looked forward instead of back to the first half century of world war.
He knew that America could dream and build if we were set free.
Not tanks for war, but rockets for exploration.
Reagan looked out – to us – the most powerful force for innovation that the world has ever known:
There we found the new tech pioneers like Bill Gates and a young Steve Jobs. They had vision and the freedom to build a new world that that at the time only THEY saw and because they were free. They challenged the way and changed the way all of us live, work, and interact.
Now it is our turn.
This generation must first look inward to see who we really are, after years of being beaten down.
Years of being told we couldn’t, shouldn’t, or wouldn’t.
This generation needs to answer a new set of questions.
Can we? Should we? Will we?
Are we still those people?
Those dreamers and doers?
Are America’s greatest generations in our past?
Or are our best days yet ahead?
We must unite the Republican Party because doing so is the first step toward uniting all Americans.
The question is not whether all Americans can or will agree on a majority of issues all of the time. The question is whether a majority of Americans are hungry to rally around a set of principles larger than any single issue that a politician may use to divide us.
Tonight, I’m speaking to you from Philadelphia. It’s natural, when we talk about our Nation’s earliest days, that we focus our attention on the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. And we can learn a great deal about a path forward by focusing on the passionate disputes and disagreements among our founding fathers — differences that were put aside only because of the weight and consequence of the foundational principles they sought to proclaim and the price to be paid if they failed to rise to the task.
Today, as Republicans, we agree on a lot. And sure, areas of lesser agreement exist as well. But on the fundamental question: are we satisfied with the current direction of our country; we speak with one voice.
I call on you, as JFK did in the 60’s.
And as Reagan did in the 80’s.
To chart a new American journey forward.
One that isn’t led by me or anyone in Washington, but by you.
And millions of others just like you.
One where we still have differences, yet we choose to concentrate on what we have in common.
One that lifts others up and believes in the rights, responsibilities, goodness, and strength of all mankind.
We have so much that binds us together: our families, our work ethic, our ability to dream and build unlike any people in history. But most of all our charity, our love for our fellow men and women and our willingness to sacrifice for those in need.
Let us unite…on the things that have always made us great.
We are great because we are good.
Because over and over again we have chosen courage in the moments of crisis; freedom in the face of compromise; and hope in the face of challenges that everyone told us could not be overcome.
Our sitting president ran on a slogan that should have been a great first step…
It promised us, “yes we can.”
Now is the time to take that slogan and put it into action.
“Yes we can” was a recognition of the hope that we can and should recover. The problem was that Barack Obama’s prescriptions only led to more elitist control from Washington. Less freedom for the People.
But now is the time, as Americans, to once again reclaim that hope.
To take another giant leap for mankind.
To speak the words with all the power and might that we can muster and use the words that have changed the world time and again:
The words that the slaves yearned to hear from the American people and Abraham Lincoln when they cried out for freedom.
The words, that Europe and Britain heard when they cried out for help defeating totalitarian evil in the 1940’s.
The words that led two men in North Carolina to be the first in flight.
And half a century later the first man to reach the moon.
And decades later, two men in their garage to come up with Apple.
They are the words that will repair our tattered spirit, lift up our economy and those who are barely making it, they are the words that will vanquish the evil of ISIS. and return the rule of law.
They are the words that when Americans come together and say with conviction – they change the world.
They are the vision of this campaign:
Not yes we can, but now: Yes we will.
We will restore our spirit;
We will free our minds and imagination;
We will create a new and better world;
We will bring back jobs, freedom, and security;
We will find new ways to ignite an energy revolution with more jobs and greater choices;
We will defeat the evil of Islamists and ISIS;
We will live as neighbors, friends, and family in peace once again;
We will heal the sick, feed the poor, and defend the defenseless;
We will restore our rightful place in the world.
We will do what Americans do best.
We will live for others – we will change the world through the hope of freedom’s enduring promise. And our unrelenting spirit.
You can be empowered, and in a digital age it is all the easier for your voice to be heard. Your choices to govern your work, your education, your future. If only Washington will get out of the way.
Join me on this journey of less talk and more action because I know you. You may have been knocked down, but America has always been best when she is lying down with her back on the mat and the crowd has given the final count. It is time for us to get up, shake it off and be who we were destined to be.
Don’t let anyone try to convince you otherwise.
Here is the truth: You don’t need me or any politician.
But we do need each other, all of us, coming together as one, as We the People, because not only do we say – yes WE can, beginning here and now we pledge to each and every one of us, yes we will.
And now my friends, onward to victory.
Follow Michelle Moons on Twitter @MichelleDiana