ST. PAUL, Minn. (WCCO) — Fresh from Tuesday’s Republican Presidential debate in Las Vegas, Texas Senator Ted Cruz is setting his sights on Minnesota.
He made a stop in St. Paul Thursday night where he spoke to a loud and crowded Harriet Island Pavillion. Cruz rattled off a litany of things he wants to change, from securing America’s borders and defeating ISIS, to abolishing the IRS.
In particular, his promise to “carpet bomb ISIS into oblivion” prompted a harsh reaction from one protester in the crowd.
The Texas senator is building on his Iowa poll strength to bring his message to Minnesota, glad-handing an excited reception line before promising a reverse course for the country.
“[What] I intend to do, on my first day in office, is rep to shreds this catastrophic Iranian nuclear deal,” Cruz said.
Fresh off the Las Vegas debate state, Cruz told us Minnesota is part of his early strategy. When on March 1st, the largest number of Republican delegates are divvied up.
“But 10 days after South Carolina, March 1st is super Tuesday, and Minnesota is going to be a critical state,” Cruz said.
His 25-minute stump speech was unscripted, promising to repeal Obamacare, institute a flat income tax and secure America’s borders.
“The single biggest difference between me and the other fine people on the debate stage is that when I tell you I’m going to do something, I’m going to do exactly what I said,” Cruz said.
The conservative crowd liked what they heard, cheering throughout Cruz’s remarks.
“Our freedom is one of the most important things we have here,” Cruz supporter Nancy Powell said at the rally. “People from all over the world want to come here for it, and I want someone who will fight for that.”
One man who was not so pleased, tossed a leaflet at the Senator’s face during a question and answer session with reporters. University of Minnesota student Jim Meyer said he is angered by the Senator’s promise to carpet bomb Syria in a plan to defeat ISIS.
“If they take up arms and wage jihad against innocent Americans, then they are signing their death warrants,” Cruz said.
Earlier this week, Minnesota’s GOP executive committee held a straw poll. Senator Cruz was a clear favorite, out polling the other republican candidates by a 2-to-1 margin.