Tea party star Ted Cruz said the movement is stronger now than in 2010 and that Mitt Romney could make inroads with Hispanic voters because they share the same values of faith, family and patriotism.
Cruz, 41, the former Texas Solicitor who won a stunning upset over a longtime Texas state officeholder in a Republican U.S. Senate primary runoff earlier this week, told Fox News's Chris Wallace, “The American people are looking for new leaders who will step up and stop spending money we don’t have….This is part of a tidal wave that began in 2010 and that tidal wave is only stronger in 2012."
With the win, Cruz was transformed into a national conservative star and marking a resurgence of the movement to shrink the size of U.S. government. Cruz, a Cuban-American and a former state solicitor general who has never held elected office, became the third insurgent Republican this year to defeat an establishment Republican in a U.S. Senate primary.
He scored a surprisingly comfortable victory with about 56 percent of the vote to about 44 percent for Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, who a year ago was considered the front-runner.
The tea party will back Republican presidential nominee Romney to help "get the boot of the federal government off the neck of small business," Cruz said.
Cruz also told Wallace that Romney can appeal to shared values with Hispanic voters and that the Hispanic community overall has conservative values.
"The Hispanic community, the values that resonate in our community, are fundamentally conservative," Cruz, told Wallace. "They are faith, family, patriotism. Do you know the rate of military enlistment among Hispanics is higher than any demographic in this country? And they are also hard work and responsibility.”
He continued, "A friend of mine, a Hispanic entrepreneur, asked me a question some time ago. He said, ‘When is the last time you saw an Hispanic panhandler?’ I think it’s a great question. I’ll tell you, in my life I never once have seen an Hispanic panhandler because in our community, it would be viewed as shameful to be out on the street begging.”
Cruz said, "Those are all conservative values: faith, family, hard work, responsibility. And I think what Gov. Romney needs to do, what he is doing, is defending those values and making the case that the Obama agenda has been incredibly destructive to the Hispanic community."
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