They split sharply top top immigration, the NFL national anthem controversy, total rights, pot legalization and also Kavanaugh.

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In a fiery an initial debate in between GOP incumbent Sen. Ted Cruz and also Democratic Rep. Beto O"Rourke, the distinctions couldn"t have been more clear.

The two Texans separation sharply during the hour-long face-off end immigration, the nationwide Football league kneeling controversy, gun rights, marijuana legalization, police-involved shootings, the check of can be fried Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh and also more.


There was essentially no usual ground, ~ above anything. And they didn"t hesitate to get in each other"s faces.

Cruz hammered O"Rourke, that represents the border city area that El Paso, over his assistance for undocumented immigrants.

During the face-off at southerly Methodist college in Dallas before a live audience, O"Rourke said he wants to carry out a pathway to legalization because that undocumented immigrants and attacked Cruz for pushing to deport every one of them, consisting of "Dreamers" brought to the United states as children. Cruz then boiled under his place on the problem to the audience in 4 words: “Legal good, illegal bad."

The race between Cruz and also O"Rourke is pertained to as how amazing competitive for a Democrat in a red state. Texas hasn"t chosen a Democrat come the Senate in 25 years, and also it"s garnering national attention. This week, the authoritative cook Political Report rated the dispute as a "toss-up."


The candidates, answering questions from two reporters indigenous NBC 5 and The Dallas Morning News, likewise clashed end the controversy involving football football player kneeling throughout the nationwide anthem to protest police-involved shootings the unarmed black color men. Chairman Donald Trump has repeatedly condemned the kneeling together disrespectful.

Cruz claimed he additionally found the protests come be offensive and included that he believed there are better ways for players to fight injustice. But O"Rourke likened the protests to the civil civil liberties movement and said he supported the players.

Cruz tried to repaint O’Rourke as anti-law enforcement and also claimed his foe had referred to as police "modern job Jim Crow," i beg your pardon O"Rourke denied.


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The candidates additionally traded barbs when they were asked about the death of Botham Jean, a black color Texas male shot in ~ his home by one off-duty Dallas police officer previously this month.


Cruz accused O"Rourke of not backing legislation enforcement and rushing come judgment against the officer who shot Jean, calling that a "troubling pattern" and also charging the his foe uses "irresponsible and also hateful rhetoric" against police officers.

O’Rourke shot ago and blasted Cruz because that "slander."

"This is your trick in the trade, to confuse and also to incite fear," O’Rourke said.

The candidates additionally discussed the scandal surrounding Kavanaugh, the president"s can be fried Court nominee, who has actually been accused by Christine Blasey Ford the sexual attack while the two were in high school.


Cruz stated that if Ford testifies prior to the Senate Judiciary Committee and there is something compelling in her appearance he would "absolutely" not vote to confirm Trump"s pick.

However, that slammed O’Rourke for supporting liberal "activist" judges that Cruz charged will certainly not monitor the Constitution, an attack the Democrat dismissed.


O’Rourke stated that even without Ford’s allegation, he could not acquire behind Kavanaugh due to the fact that of the judge"s document on issues, such as voting rights and also abortion. He added that her case of assault should it is in investigated by the FBI before any kind of Senate confirmation vote takes places.

"Dr. Ford"s allegations have to be investigated by the FBI. Complete stop," O"Rourke said.


O"Rourke, who boasted the he has actually visited every ar in Texas because that his Senate campaign, slammed Cruz for lacking days in the Senate if on the project trail for president in 2016.

"You phone call me who deserve to miss fifty percent the days in ~ work and also then be rehired because that the same job going forward?" O"Rourke said.

On another issue, Cruz accused O"Rourke that flirting with legalizing all drugs as soon as the autonomous lawmaker was an El Paso City the supervisory board member. O"Rourke refuse that, yet said he supported legalizing marijuana in the state for medicinal functions as an different to prescription painkillers.

The debate additionally became controversial when the candidates to be asked around gun rights, specifically school shootings, such as the Santa Fe, Texas, high institution murders in May.


Cruz said such shootings room a an outcome of "removing God from the general public square" and also called for equipped guards in schools as a deterrent. The charged that O"Rourke was a Hillary Clinton supporter who wanted come toss the end the second Amendment.

O’Rourke denied he wanted to get rid of the best to very own guns but rather search to make it harder for civilians to access military-grade weapons.

"Thoughts and prayers are simply not walking to cut it anymore, city council Cruz," the said.

During the debate, O"Rourke consistently sidestepped avenues to strike Trump, saying he would certainly stand as much as the chairman on part issues and also work v him on others after Cruz asserted O"Rourke wanted to impeach the president.

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Toward the end, the candidates were asked to say other nice about each other. For his part, O"Rourke attributed Cruz for being a household man and his public service. Cruz, in turn, readily available a backhand compliment by praising O"Rourke because that standing up for his beliefs—even if it to be for gift a socialist favor Sen. Bernie Sanders.