Tuesday, a retired game warden named Pete Flores did something remarkable for a Republican in Texas State Senate District 19. He actually won. The district covers 400 miles of the Texas-Mexico border. It is 66 percent Hispanic. It had been held by Democrats for one hundred thirty-nine years. Yet Flores just turned it red. A Houston Chronicle headline claims Texas Democrats should be demoralized by Republican Pete Flores’s victory. Texas Republican Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick is president of the Texas Senate. Governor, great to have you. The Texas Senate debate was held tonight. Let’s take a listen to some of Senator Ted Cruz and his challenger. Better work going after it.
To ask you to tell us something that you admire about your opponent. Thank you, Senator Cruz, for your public service. I think you are absolutely sincere, like burning, that you believe in an expanding government and higher taxes. And I commend you for fighting for what you believe. True to form.
So is that a winning message that better work is too liberal for Texas?
Well, he is too liberal for Texas. He’s too liberal for America. He’s he would fit in Sweden very well. But he said, look, he is a socialist. He’s looking, here’s the big deal about this election, Mike, and why Pete floor is one the other night. The Democrats are on the wrong side of the issues. And as Newt Gingrich and President Trump say, this is a big choice election. And people need to put all the personal insults and all the personal attacks you see in a campaign. Put them on the side. Where do you stand as an American? I know we’re a Texan. Stand and where Hispanics in Texas stand that district that Republican senator now pick for us. One is 66 percent Hispanic. Again, a Republican has never held that district since 1879. And why did Pete force win resoundingly? Because let’s look at the big issues. P. Flores, the Republican, is for a secure border. The Democrats are for open borders, including better O’Rorke. Pete Flores is for smaller government and lower taxes. Democrats are for bigger government and higher taxes. Pete Flores, the Republican, was for Second Amendment rights protecting your Second Amendment. The Democrats want to take away your guns. And a big issue with Hispanic voters, Mike, is the pro-life issue. The majority, the vast majority of Hispanics in this country, and especially in Texas, even down on the border where they say it’s all Democrat, Hispanics respect innocent life in the womb. And Democrats do not. These are big core issues. And you know, the old saying, big, bold, be bold or go home. All right. Well, Republicans in this election nationally have to be bold or they may go home. Let’s set it out. Where are the Republicans? Where are the Democrats? There’s a Grand Canyon divide difference between these core issues that are American values and Texas values.
I covered the Texas legislature years ago. And to be clear, Texas state senators represent a huge area of turf. A lot of people, as I write.
Yes. A Texas Senate district is larger than a Texas congressional district. Each senator represents about eight hundred thousand people. I was a senator for eight years before becoming lieutenant governor, for example. Three Texas Senate districts are as large as the entire state of Iowa, almost in terms of population. So these are big districts. This was a big election and it was won because Pete Floras stood on the president’s agenda, which is America’s agenda. The president didn’t win two years ago because he was wrong on the issues. He won because he was right on the issues and Hillary Clinton was wrong. And Betto Rourke is wrong. And everyone running for Congress. You know, Republicans have to remember this. Sometimes I’ll look at the Democrats who that person doesn’t sound too bad. But if you’re a Democrat in the general election, you didn’t get there by being a conservative or moderate in the primary. The only Democrats who get through their primaries are wild-eyed leftist liberals that sound like Bernie Sanders or Hillary Clinton.
They don’t live down well. We have to leave it there. Sir, we thank you for your time. Great. Thank you.