Sen. Ted Cruz answers a question about the "secret recording" that was reported by Politico on Wednesday to demonstrate that repealing gay marriage would not be a top priority for the senator if he were elected president.
"My view on gay marriage is that I'm a constitutionalist and marriage is a question for the states," Sen. Cruz says in the recording.
Ted cruz says these comments are "almost word for word what I said on Jay Leno and Stephen Colbert."
The same Politico piece reports that Catherine Frazier, the Cruz campaign’s national press secretary, said his comments about gay marriage "are nothing new. ... This is nothing different from what he says all the time."
The piece also quotes an anonymous "adviser to a rival campaign" who said the comments demonstrated that "There’s an Iowa Ted and a New York Ted." "He sounds different behind closed doors."
TED CRUZ: In fact it was striking, Politico runs this banner headline, "Secret Tape!" when it was almost word for word what I said on Jay Leno and Stephen Colbert. It ain't very secret --I know Colbert may not have a ton of viewers-- but saying it on national TV, is not a great plan for keeping something secret.
I will say it is amusing reading the anonymous quote from advisors from other campaigns saying, "oh this is devastating, this is going to be a real problem," "he says in private meetings the same thing he says publicly."
It's silliness, but no one should be surprised. the dynamic we've been seeing in this race has been conservatives uniting behind this campaign.
A few days ago, Donald Trump observed that he thought this race may well come down to a two man race between him and me. I think that's entirely possible. No one should be surprised that the other candidates are attacking, and their response is to attack. Their response is to claim everything is a scandal that shows I'm really the embodiment of evil.
Okay fine, knock yourselves out. The voters are smarter than you give them credit for, and the voters can tell when other candidates are throwing rocks.
What tends to happen is, when other candidates get nasty, their support starts dropping. I think what the American people are looking for a leader that has a positive optimistic conservative vision.
So while others have been willing to throw rocks back and forth, I'm not going to.
The "Secret Tape" of Cruz:
Male questioner: “Can I ask you a question? So, I'm a big supporter. And the only issue I really disagree with you about is gay marriage. And I'm curious: Given all the problems that the country’s facing — like ISIS, the growth of government — how big a priority is fighting gay marriage going to be to a Cruz administration?”
Cruz: “My view on gay marriage is that I'm a constitutionalist and marriage is a question for the states. And so I think if someone wants to change the marriage laws of their state, the way to do so is convince your fellow citizens — and change them democratically, rather than five unelected judges. ... Being a constitutionalist is integral to my approach to every other issue. So that I’m very devoted to.”
Same questioner: “So would you say it's like a top-three priority for you — fighting gay marriage?”
Cruz: “No. I would say defending the Constitution is a top priority. And that cuts across the whole spectrum — whether it's defending [the] First Amendment, defending religious liberty, stopping courts from making public policy issues that are left to the people. ...
“I also think the 10th Amendment of the Constitution cuts across a whole lot of issues and can bring people together. People of New York may well resolve the marriage question differently than the people of Florida or Texas or Ohio. ... That's why we have 50 states — to allow a diversity of views. And so that is a core commitment.”
Stephen Colbert's Interview with Ted Cruz on September 21:
Entertainment Weekly wrote:
During a discussion about whether Cruz could emulate Ronald Reagan as a Republican nominee when Reagan raised taxes and allowed amnesty for immigrants who enter the United States without proper documentation, Cruz explained his conservative values. “What I’m fighting for are simple principles: live within our means, stop bankrupting our kids and grandkids, follow the constitution.” To which Colbert added, “And no gay marriage.”
The host’s words drew applause from the audience. “Under the constitution, marriage is a question for the states,” Cruz replied. After Colbert noted that the U.S. constitution doesn’t mention marriage, Cruz said he felt it should rest with the states to decide on marriage legality.
“The 10th amendment says if [the constitution] doesn’t mention it, it’s a question for the states. That’s in the Bill of Rights,” Cruz said. “If you want to change the marriage laws. […] I believe in democracy. I don’t think we should trust …” Cruz’s words were cut off by boos from the crowd.
“Guys, however you feel, he’s my guest, so please don’t boo him,” Colbert said to the audience before allowing Cruz to finish his point.