Cruz said the media “desperately wants to see a Republican civil war,” adding that what can unite the party is the defense of liberty. The Texas senator also made clear he believes former President Donald Trump will play a role when it comes to the future of Republican politics.
“Donald Trump ain’t going anywhere,” he said on stage. “And the Republican party is not the party of the country clubs. It is the party of steel workers, construction workers, pipeline workers … the men and women with calluses on their hands.”
Earlier this week two of the top Republicans in the House of Representatives disagreed about whether Trump should speak at the conference. Trump is expected to deliver remarks at CPAC on Feb. 28, his first public speech since leaving the White House.
“There are a whole lot of voices in Washington who want to erase the last four years,” Cruz said. “They want to go back before when the government was by the lobbyists, for the lobbyists.”
During his speech, Cruz often spoke out broadly against cancel culture and of conformity in the country.
“The media here looks at the men and women gathered here as dangerous radicals,” he said. “This is the rebel alliance. And Vader and the emperor are terrified of the rebels who are here.”
At one point Cruz criticized the misuse of political power amid the pandemic, namely the hard-hitting restrictions enacted in some states as he spoke out against the shutting down of churches. In recent times, the Supreme Court has issued decisions blocking politicians from enforcing tougher restrictions on attendance.
Cruz acknowledged that COVID-19 is a “dangerous virus” but also critiqued some of rules put into place. He pointed out how people have to wear masks before they enter into restaurants, but once they sit down everything is fine and they can take their masks off.
“The left believes in conformity,” he said. “We believe free speech, religious worship, you can worship whoever you like … that’s the beauty of freedom, the second amendment. The left hates the second amendment, they want people docile and compliant.”
The senator urged everyone attending the conference to “speak out for freedom” and suggested there will be a political backlash against the Democrats in the coming years.
“Mark my words: 2022 is going to be a fantastic election year—and so is 2024,” he said.
From The Epoch Times