Ted Cruz on Saturday mourned the state of political rhetoric in the United States of late, saying that the tone of the conversation is “not good for the country,” USA Today is reporting.
Speaking at a Houston-area campaign rally Saturday night, hours after a mass shooting at a Pittsburgh synagogue claimed 11 lives, Cruz said that political bigotry and violence have “no place in our nation.”
“We are right now bitterly divided. And I wish everyone would just take a deep breath and calm down. All of us should treat each other with civility, with decency and with respect.”
And in an unexpected move, Cruz also spoke rather candidly about Donald Trump’s role in the division between the two sides. Trump has been accused of stirring up angry sentiment against his opponents and the media, and after the rally, a reporter asked him (Cruz) if Trump should tone down his attacks, Cruz was surprisingly forthcoming.
“The anger, the rage, the personal attacks and nastiness — that’s not good for our country.”
That the country is mired in a deep divide, sometimes resulting in violence, is beyond question. Last week, a series of pipe bombs were mailed to various Democratic politicians as well as CNN; all recipients of the “suspicious packages” were people or organizations whom Donald Trump has publicly assailed and called “enemies.” On Saturday, a gunman killed 11 people at a Pittsburgh synagogue; the alleged gunman, Robert Bowers, purportedly believed that Jews were somehow behind a caravan of migrants currently making its way through Latin America and towards the US-Mexico border.
So Ted Cruz supporters want to "lock up" Beto O'Rourke now. https://t.co/WCFydrDN4P
— HuffPost (@HuffPost) October 28, 2018
Those are just the recent incidents. Back in 2017, Republican Congressman Steve Scalise was shot and injured at the Congressional Baseball Game; and a few months after that, the Unite The Right rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, turned deadly.
Of course, not all of the rancor between the two sides has been deadly or even violent, but nevertheless uncomfortable. Teenagers have had their Make America Great Again hats ripped off of their heads; brawls have broken out at Donald Trump’s star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame; Republican and Democrat politicians have found themselves accosted by protesters at restaurants; the list goes on.
For his part, Cruz’s opponent, Beto O’Rourke, also decries the rancor in Trump’s America. Speaking at a campaign rally in Dallas, O’Rourke echoed Cruz’s appeals for civility.
“It’s never been so bitter and it’s never been in greater need of our ability, which was shown in the past and we’re showing right now, to transcend that.”