Texas Sen. Ted Cruz wows crowd at Orlando Tea Party rally

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“Run, Ted, run” greeted U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz as he spoke to a crowd of passionate conservatives and Tea Party activists; it was an enthusiastic chorus calling for him to run for the presidency in 2016.

The refrain grew louder through the Texas Senator’s appearance at Saturday’s Americans for Prosperity rally in Orlando, where the straight-talking Cruz threw red meat to the faithful by blasting federal health care reform legislation.

Cruz was the keynote speaker at the two-day conference, receiving the most heartfelt response of all the speakers, says Alex Leary in the Miami Herald, even more than GOP favorites Sen. Marco Rubio and Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal.

In his 25-minute speech, Cruz blamed both political parties for the country’s mess, as he constantly hammered home the Tea Party theme that politicians don’t listen to the people. He even drew boos when mentioning the Senate immigration bill, which Rubio helped create.

With all the energy surrounding the event, it was defunding the Affordable Care Act that brought the crowd to its feet. Cruz received the loudest sustained applause when Cruz declared to “repeal every single word of Obamacare.”

Cruz’s words came right after Obama gave a nationally televised address saying he would seek congressional approval for attacks on Syria, which opened the door for Cruz to question the wisdom of military intervention.

However, he did entertain listening both sides of the issue.

“In my view, U.S. military force is justified only to protect the vital, national security interests of the United States, and to date the administration has not focused on those interests, at least in its public effort to make the case,” Cruz told the crowd. “So I welcome this debate in Congress.”


Phil Ammann is a St. Petersburg-based journalist and blogger. With more than three decades of writing, editing and management experience, Phil produced material for both print and online, in addition to founding HRNewsDaily.com. His broad range includes covering news, local government and culture reviews for Patch.com, technical articles and profiles for BetterRVing Magazine and advice columns for a metaphysical website, among others. Phil has served as a contributor and production manager for SaintPetersBlog since 2013. He lives in St. Pete with his wife, visual artist Margaret Juul and can be reached at [email protected] and on Twitter @PhilAmmann.