Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, advocated for a return to a Reagan-era form of American nationalism at the National Conservatism Conference on Monday.
While embracing the "America first" theme and working-class conservatism embodied by the Trump movement, Cruz took a shot at what he called Big Government isolationism expressed by several other prominent speakers at the conference.
Speaking at the second iteration of the gathering, a three-day assembly of conservatives in Orlando, Florida, Cruz attacked the movement toward what he describes as big government, protectionism and isolationism forwarded by certain prominent figures at the conference.
"So what is nationalism, populism, and conservatism not? No. 1, it's not a recipe for right-wing Big Government," he said. "There’s some who are thinking through what to do, who are suggesting the answer is more government power over every aspect of our lives but in a more conservative direction rather than a more liberal direction.
"And let me tell you right now. Tyranny never works out for those not in government. It’s pretty good for the tyrants, and the subjects suffer."
The anti-big government sentiment expressed by Cruz took an interesting turn when he later called for antitrust intervention against Big Tech and an unleashing of "all available options."
"Big Tech, I believe, is the single greatest threat to free speech and free elections in the United States," he said. "So we need to use every single tool we have — we need to flood the zone. That means using the antitrust laws, that means we use the consumer protection laws, that means using the powers of the state and state legislators and state attorneys general. That means using every tool we have."
He also expressed familiar attacks against pandemic restrictions, critical race theory, corporate media, Hollywood, and "woke" corporations.
The most notable part of his speach was when he declared he will not accept any further corporate PAC money — encouraging his colleagues to do the same.
"The entire phalanx of Big Businesses has gone hard left — by the way, that's one of the reasons I announced months ago that I won’t accept a penny from any corporate PAC in America … and I think we need a lot more Republicans with the courage to say corporate PACs can go jump in a lake if you are going to use your resources to try to destroy the republic and try to destroy the nation," Cruz said. "I don't want a penny."
Cruz ended his speech by drawing from the hope of the Reagan Revolution. He said Republicans can win by standing on truth.
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