NONPARTISAN CANDIDATE GUIDE: 2018 TEXAS SENATOR’S RACE

Ted Cruz (R-Incumbent)
Beto O’Rourke (D)

Created by the Campus Election Engagement Project, a nonpartisan effort to help college and university administrators, faculty, and student leaders engage their schools in the election. Key sites consulted included Votesmart.org, OntheIssues.org, FactCheck.org, Politifact.com, and public candidate statements. For guides to local races, see Vote411.org from the League of Women Voters and Ballotready.org. For more detailed information visit their votesmart.org pages.

Visit tedcruz.org and betofortexas.com to volunteer. Neal Dikeman (L) is also running. Due to limited space, we can only include candidates who poll 15% or higher, but encourage you to check out his website. To download a printable pdf version of this guide, click here.


Abortion: Mostly ban or mostly legal?

Ted Cruz – Ban. No exceptions for rape or incest. “horrible as that crime is, I don’t believe it’s the child’s fault.”

Beto O’Rourke – Legal. Ensure abortions are rare, but trust women to make their own decisions without government interference.

 

Campaign Finance: Require political ads to disclose their largest funders? Stand on Citizens United decision, allowing unlimited political donations from corporations & unions?

Ted Cruz – No. Opposes DISCLOSE Act, as it raises “grave constitutional concern for speech protected by the First Amendment.” Supports Citizens United as aid to 1st Amendment free speech protections.

Beto O’Rourke – Yes. Co-sponsored DISCLOSE Act to “shine light on the unlimited, secret spending flooding American elections,” including foreign influence. Supreme Court should end Citizens United.

 

Climate Change: Consider climate change a serious threat?

Ted Cruz – No. Doesn’t believe it’s real. Says data disproving it is being ignored as liberals want government power over economy, energy sector & all aspects of our lives.

Beto O’Rourke – Yes. “Crucial now more than ever that US & world leaders act urgently to address” it. Climate change increases droughts, wildfires, hurricanes, & other disasters.

 

Climate Change: Limit or tax production of greenhouse gases? Support US participation in Paris Climate Accord despite President Trump’s withdrawal?

Ted Cruz – Opposes regulating greenhouse gases. Paris Accord “would have destroyed $3 trillion in American GDP & killed 6.5 million industrial sector jobs by 2040.”

Beto O’Rourke – Limit greenhouse gases. “Need to take unprecedented action” in building clean energy economy. Opposes withdrawing from Paris Accord.

 

Contraception: Employers can withhold contraceptive coverage if disagree?

Ted Cruz – Yes. Proposed bill to allow that.

Beto O’Rourke – No. Discriminates by ignoring contraception’s role in women’s health.

 

Courts: Support Judge Kavanaugh nomination? (before recent allegations)

Ted Cruz – Yes, though initially believed Kavanaugh was not conservative enough.

Beto O’Rourke – No. His positions do not line up with values & interests of Texans.

 

Economy: Support federal spending as a means of promoting economic growth?

Ted Cruz – No. Choice between more & more spending & individual liberty.

Beto O’Rourke – Yes. Supports investment in areas like infrastructure & education.

 

Economy: Support Trump’s imposition of tariffs on steel & other products?

Ted Cruz – No. Also opposed federal aid given to TX farmers hurt by trade retaliation.

Beto O’Rourke – No. They “will devastate our state, businesses, & economy.”

 

Education: Help parents send their children to private schools with public money?

Ted Cruz – Yes. Called “civil rights issue of our time.” Introduced bill to allow tax deduction for costs of private & religious schools.

Beto O’Rourke – No. It funnels public school $ into private schools. “Ted Cruz’s private school give-away will cost taxpayers $500 million to subsidize wealthy.”

 

Elections: Support nonpartisan redistricting to address charges of partisan gerrymandering?

Ted Cruz – No. Political gerrymandering is legitimate, though not racial gerrymandering.

Beto O’Rourke – Yes. “Empower communities by making sure voters can pick their representatives, not the other way.”

 

Environment: Support cutbacks of Environmental Protection Administration?

Ted Cruz – No statement found, but opposed Obama EPA’s Clean Power Plan & said EPA ran amok under Obama.

Beto O’Rourke – No. Ensure EPA’s funding & independence  “to exercise oversight of those harming the environment.”

 

Financial Regulation: Support cutbacks in Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB)?

Ted Cruz – Yes. Abolish CFPB. “Free consumers & small businesses from the CFPB’s regulatory blockades… which stunt economic growth.”

Beto O’Rourke – No. “Protecting consumers from predatory financial behavior & this country from another economic meltdown, should transcend politics.”

 

Gay Marriage: Support gay marriage?

Ted Cruz – No.  Sponsored amendment to define marriage as between man & a woman.

Beto O’Rourke – Yes.

 

Gun Control: Support more restrictive gun control legislation?

Ted Cruz – No. Led fight not to ban assault weapons. Calls gun control efforts “tiresome.”

Beto O’Rourke – Yes. Supports universal background checks & banning assault-style weapons.

 

Healthcare: Support or Repeal Affordable Care Act (ACA), known as Obamacare?

Ted Cruz – Absolutely repeal. Caused millions to lose their jobs, be forced into part-time work, lose health insurance & doctors & pay skyrocketing premiums.

Beto O’Rourke – Keep  but improve, including public option. Repeal would reduce healthcare access & benefits, make health insurance less affordable.

 

Healthcare: Let Planned Parenthood get public funds for non-abortion care?

Ted Cruz – No. Was willing to risk a government shutdown in in order to defund.

Beto O’Rourke – Yes. Provide important preventive services, esp. for low-income families.

 

Immigration: Support path to citizenship for “DACA” recipients or “Dreamers,” who grew up in US after coming as children?

Ted Cruz – No. End DACA. No path to citizenship to Dreamers or anyone else who violates immigration laws.

Beto O’Rourke – Protect Dreamers. “As American as my kids… & have done everything we’ve asked of them.” Supports earned path to citizenship for millions here illegally.

 

Iran: Support Trump’s withdrawal from treaty that limits Iran’s nuclear capability in return for lifting economic sanctions?

Ted Cruz – Yes. Applauded withdrawal, saying agreement didn’t sufficiently rein in Iran’s nuclear program.

Beto O’Rourke – No. Agreement, while imperfect, was “best path to keep Iran from having nuclear weapons.”

 

Marijuana: Legalize or decriminalize marijuana?

Ted Cruz – Personally opposed to legalization, but states should choose for themselves.

Beto O’Rourke – Yes. Long-time legalization advocate. Sponsored bill to end federal prohibition.

 

Minimum Wage: Raise the federal minimum wage from current $7.25/hr?

Ted Cruz – No. “Raising the minimum wage would cost jobs for the most vulnerable.”

Beto O’Rourke – Yes. Supports increasing to $15/hr.

 

Net Neutrality: Require internet providers to provide equal access to all?

Ted Cruz – No. Net neutrality puts government in charge of pricing, products & services.

Beto O’Rourke – Yes. Rolling back net neutrality hurts democracy, the arts & innovation.