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Sen. Ted Cruz Campaigns in Keokuk

U.S. Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas) signs an autograph following a campaign stop in Keokuk Tuesday afternoon.

It was not your typical Tuesday afternoon at Beef, Bread & Brew in Keokuk. The parking lot was filled, the nearby side streets were lined with vehicles, and a major cable network had a satellite truck parked outside. The restaurant was filled with more than 100 people eager to meet U.S. Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas), who brought his Presidential campaign to Lee County.

“God bless the great state of Iowa,” said Cruz after receiving the microphone, adding “I spent most of last week in Washington, D.C., so it is great to be back in America.”

From there, Cruz went into his stump speech, which started off with a few jokes, including one involving President Obama and Pope Francis.

“I’ll tell you it was really incredible to sit on the floor of the House of Representatives, to listen to the Pope address a joint session of Congress,” said Cruz. “I will admit, the day before, the press conference at the White House was a little bit awkward. Every time the reporters addressed a question to Your Holiness, Obama answered.”

Once the laughter died down, Cruz told the crowd the country is in crisis. 

Credit Jason Parrott / TSPR
Cruz spoke to an overflow crowd in Keokuk Tuesday afternoon.

“We’re here today because we are bankrupting our kids and our grandkids, because our Constitutional rights are under assault from Washington and because America has receded from leadership in the world,” said Cruz. “Yet I am here with a word of hope and encouragement and exhortation. All across this country, people are waking up and I’m here to tell you, ‘Help is on the way.’”

Cruz explained his plans for Day 1 in the White House.

  1. “Rescind every single illegal and unconstitutional executive action taken by this president.”
  2. “Instruct the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) to open an investigation into Planned Parenthood and these horrible videos and prosecute any and all criminal violations by that organization.”
  3. “Instruct the DOJ and IRS and every other federal agency that the persecution of religious liberty ends today.”
  4. “Rip to shreds this catastrophic Iranian nuclear deal.”
  5. “Begin the process of moving the American embassy in Israel to Jerusalem, the once and true capital of Israel.”

Cruz went on to tell the crowd of supporters that in days 2, 3, 4 and beyond, he would repeal Obamacare, end Common Core, and halt the practice of sanctuary cities.
“ When I say I am going to do something, I will do exactly what I say,” said Cruz.

Jason Parrott is a former reporter at Tri States Public Radio.