In an energetic and well-received address kicking off CPAC 2014, Texas senator and Tea Party favorite Ted Cruz took shots at “consultants” and Barney Frank, decried that under Obama “the people of Ukraine have seen Russian tanks move into their sovereign land,” and urged the abolition of the IRS, the institution of a flat tax, and the repeal of “every single word of Obamacare.”
“We are at the edge of a cliff,” Cruz told the crowd. “Liberty is under assault.”
After opening his address by joking that “by virtue of your being here today, tomorrow, each and every one of you is going to be audited by the IRS,” Cruz said Republican “got walloped” in the 2006, 2008 and 2010 elections because they followed the advice of “DC consultants” who “say if you stand for principle, you lose elections.” He joked, “Of course, all of us remember President Dole and President McCain and President Romney.” While he respected those failed candidates, said Cruz, “When you don’t stand for principle, Democrats celebrate.”
Cruz then turned to how the GOP can attract young people, saying that despite lacking a “young, rugged, James Dean, rebel-without-a-cause” look, the best Republican examples of youth appeal were Ronald Reagan and Ron Paul. “The Obama agenda has been horrible for young people,” said Cruz, “and yet how many Republicans said that?”
Cruz offered the crowd a 10-point policy platform, including defending the Constitution (“How many of you all have your cellphones? Please leave them on — I want to make sure President Obama hears everything I have to say this morning”); Dodd-Frank repeal (“Talk about a bill that you don’t have to read any further than the title to know nothing good could come of this”), and auditing the Federal Reserve (“debasing our currency … fueling the abuse of power by petro-tyrants by Putin”).
“If the American people continue to rise up …” Cruz promised the crowd, “we will bring back morning in America.”