I have the honor of standing before you this evening for one reason - because thousands upon thousands of grassroots activists stood united, not for a candidate, but for the sake of liberty.
We’re seeing something extraordinary. Something that has dumbfounded the chattering class. It began in 2010, right here in Florida. In Utah, Kentucky, and in Pennsylvania. It continued this summer in the state of Indiana, in Nebraska, in Wisconsin. And in the Lone Star State.
We are seeing a Great Awakening. A national movement of we the people, brought together by what unites us – a shared love of liberty, and an understanding of the unlimited potential of free man and free women.
I want to tell you a love story. I want to tell you a love story. It’s the story of all of us, it’s a love story of freedom.
It’s the story of our Founding Fathers, who fought and bled for freedom and then crafted the most miraculous political document ever conceived, our Constitution. The Framers understood that our rights come, not from monarchs, but from God; and that those rights are secure only when government power is restrained.
It’s the story of the brave Texians in the City of Gonzales. When General Santa Anna demanded that they hand over their guns and the cannon that guarded their city, they responded with the immortal cry “Come and take it.”
It’s the story of the greatest generation who rose up to confront the grotesque evil that was the Nazis, and ushered in the greatest era of peace and prosperity the world has ever seen.
It’s the story of civil-rights pioneers, like Dr. Martin Luther King, who stood up to the scourge of discrimination, and bravely championed that each of us must be judged, not by the color of our skin, but by the content of our character.
It’s the story of President Ronald Reagan, who turned back the growth of government and restored Morning in America. Who stood up against the oppressive evil of communism and demanded “Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall.”
It’s the story of my Mom. Irish and Italian, working class, the first in her family to go to college – she became a pioneering computer programmer in the 1950s.
It’s the story of my father, imprisoned and tortured in Cuba, beaten nearly to death. He fled to Texas in 1957, not speaking English, with $100 sewn into his underwear. He washed dishes making 50 cents an hour to pay his way through the University of Texas, and to start a small business in the oil and gas industry.
My father is here today. When he came to America, él no tenía nada, pero tenía corazón
. He had nothing, but he had heart. A heart for freedom. Thank you, Dad.
It’s the story of each and every one of you. We are all sons and daughters of those who risked everything for freedom, and each of us has a duty to pass that same liberty on to the next generation.
And yet today, many in Washington seemed content to saddle our children with a crushing debt and a limited future. We’re going broke.
But I’m here with a word of encouragement. Millions of Americans are standing up, saying we want our country back. Republicans, Democrats, and independents. We will not follow the path of Greece; we will not go quietly into the night.
President Obama is immensely talented and a man of deep convictions, and yet, his economic agenda is perilous indeed. This election presents a stark choice.
We can continue down the road of the Obama Democrats, more and more spending, debt and government control of the economy. Or we can return to the founding principles of our nation - free markets, fiscal responsibility and individual liberty.
Unfortunately, President Obama’s campaign is trying to divide America, to separate us into groups. Telling seniors that Medicare will be taken away, telling Hispanics that we’re not welcome here, and send the Vice President to preach a message of division.
It’s tragic, how far we’ve come from hope and change.
All of this is designed to distract from the real issues that matter. Twenty-three million Americans struggling for work. Sixteen trillion in national debt. Government takeovers of much of our economy.
Imagine, for a moment, if someone surreptitiously charged thousands of dollars on your credit cards, saddling your kids with debts they could never escape. My wife Heidi and I are blessed with two little girls, Caroline and Catherine, four and one. When Caroline was born, our national debt was $10 trillion. Today, as the debt clock shows, it’s $16 trillion dollars, larger than our gross domestic product.
How do we turn things around? President Obama thinks the answer is more and more government. Government is not the answer. You are not doing anyone a favor by creating dependency, destroying individual responsibility.
Fifty-five years ago, when my dad was a penniless teenager, thank God some well-meaning bureaucrat didn’t put his arm around him and say let me take care of you. Let me give you a government check and make you dependent on government. And by the way, don’t bother learning English. That would have been utterly destructive.
Instead, my parents worked together to build a small business, to provide for their family and to chart their own future. That’s the American dream. Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan understand that government doesn’t create jobs. Entrepreneurs did.
Two-thirds of all new jobs in the economy comes from small businesses, and 2.3 million Hispanics owns small businesses. And yet this administration has waged a war on small businesses. A war that is costing our future and our opportunity.
I want to close by asking a few questions, I’d like to close with asking you a few questions, with apologies to Barack Obama.
Can we restore the Constitution?
Yes we can.
Can we retake the Senate?
(Yes we can.)
Can we repeal ObamaCare?
(Yes we can.)
And can we defeat President Barack Obama?
(Yes we can.)
Stand together with Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan. Restore the American love story. That, my friends, is change we can believe in.
Thank you, and God bless you.
Note: Mr. Ted Cruz is the former Texas Solicitor General. He is the Republican nominee for the Texas Senate seat, which will be contested on November 6, 2012, against the Democratic nominee, Mr. Paul Sadler.