by Morgan Montalvo
Sen. Ted Cruz says restricting gun ownership by law-abiding citizens is not the answer to fighting armed extremism, News Radio 1200 WOAI reports.
Following a Monday evening appearance on the Joe Pags Show, Cruz paused to field additional questions about recent mass killings overseas, the prospect for similar incidents on U.S. soil, and how the 2020 Presidential race is shaping up.
Cruz cites the response of an armed citizen immediately following the Sutherland Springs church attack as an example of a responsible firearm owner preventing further bloodshed.
"In that instance, an incredible hero, Stephen Willeford, stepped forward and exercised his own Second Amendment rights and saved countless people," Cruz says.
The Texas lawmaker says the preferable solution to firearms confiscation is aggressive enforcement of existing gun laws to keep weapons away from criminals, terror suspects or potential mass shooters.
Turning to the 2020 Presidential race, Cruz says he expects to see more Democrats enter the field while at the same time discounting a primary challenger to Pres. Trump.
As for his recent challenger, former West Texas Congressman Beto O'Rourke's entry into the crowded Democratic Party list of contenders, Cruz says O'Rourke likely will remain among the top hopefuls, in spite of recent negative publicity.
Cruz says he considers it "ironic" that O'Rourke enjoyed celebrity status during his 2018 bid for Cruz' Senate seat but, since declaring his candidacy for the White House just days ago, has weathered immediate criticism for comments on the campaign trail in Iowa and his background prior to entering politics.
"The reason you're seeing all of this negative stuff on Beto, is it's the other Democrats going after him. It's the Bernie campaign, the Kamala Harris campaign, the other Democrats, and now, suddenly, the press is willing to report on it," says Cruz.
No matter who ultimately is the 2020 Democratic Party nominee, Cruz says, that candidate will be tied to a platform driven increasingly to the Far Left by a vocal, energetic "fringe" element.
"Seventy-percent tax rates, supporting socialism, supporting socialized medicine, supporting open borders, supporting late-term abortions - these are extreme positions. These are positions that, even a couple of years ago, would have been really fringe positions in the Democratic Party.
"That's not good for the country, to have one of our two major political parties going off the ideological extreme," says Cruz.