Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) considers himself a master debater. He even has the credentials and awards to prove it, too. Yet, when he encountered MSNBC’s Morning Joe host, Joe Scarborough, the sparks flew.
The senator appeared on the show to celebrate his primary win. One of the show’s regulars, Mike Barnicle, rubbed Cruz the wrong way with his first question. He asked, whether the senator thought an 18-year-old should be able to legally purchase a weapon of war, but no handgun.
Then, Cruz hit the ground running. He claimed AR-15s might appear “scary,” but these guns are as safe as deer hunting guns:
‘Different states have different laws. (Previous assault weapons bans) had no effect on violent crime.’
The senator continued to argue that the Supreme Court considered AR-15 ownership constitutional. He claimed the weapon was one of the most popular in the country.
Scarborough came right back at Cruz. He argued AR-15s and like weapons were “lighter” and “more lethal:”
‘It is designed to kill more effectively, more efficiently. If somebody takes a deer rifle into a high school in Parkland, that deer rifle is going to be as lethal as an AR-15?’
The show’s host built his argument, saying that the Supreme Court had not agreed to take up any challenges to the weapon’s ban:
‘I give you credit for swatting away what is reality, what is legal reality. You are talking about what you want the law to be, I’m talking about what the law is.’
In his most condescending voice, Cruz said:
‘My career was litigating before the Supreme Court. I recognize this is not what you do.’
The discussion really began to heat up when it touched upon the Supreme Court’s decisions on the Second Amendment. The senator met his match when Scarborough shot back:
‘I don’t need you to lecture me on what the Supreme Court does and what it doesn’t do. You can talk down to me all you want to…Senator, there are a lot of people, lawyers rolling their eyes at what you’re saying. This percolation has been going on for 10 years.’
The host and former U.S. representative continued:
‘If the Supreme Court denies cert time and time again, and they have since 2010, and they’ve allowed Connecticut’s laws to stand in place that actually ban assault-style weapons. The court is sitting back and allowing that to stay in place, and allowing that — that is constitutional right now. There is not a constitutional right, and you know it. You can talk down to me all you want to, but you know there is no constitutional (right to own assault-style weapons).’
Cruz rose to the occasion:
‘Who’s talking down to who (sic)? You say lawyers are rolling their eyes at me.’
Then, Scarborough fired back:
‘Even a dumb country lawyer like me understands that an AR-15 today, is not recognized as a constitutional right under the Second Amendment.’
Cruz will face his Democratic contender, Beto O’Rourke, in his race to maintain his Senate seat in November 2018.
Check out the debate between Scarborough and Cruz in the video below:
Featured Image via YouTube Screen Grab.