LAC DU SOPHISTIQUE, WISCONSIN — Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX), fresh off a Republican primary in Utah, seemed to double-down on a controversial idea he floated in the wake of the terror attacks in Brussels, Belgium, that left 30 dead and dozens more wounded. Cruz’s suggestion that cops “patrol and secure Muslim neighborhoods,” was followed-up in Wisconsin this morning when he told attendees of a rally that Americans should be prepared for a “Holy war to combat those waging a holy war” against the U.S.
“My fellow Americans,” Cruz intoned, “we must be willing to fight religious fervor with religious fervor. After all, what good is moral high ground anyway? Isn’t it better and truly isn’t it what God wants — bloodshed and war for all eternity instead of peace and love between all humankind?” Senator Cruz said “only by waging a war of ideology and religious principles can we defeat people using ideology and religious principles to recruit enemies against us.”
It was in the hours after the attacks that Cruz made national headlines by suggesting that law enforcement agencies throughout America begin patrolling areas that are more heavily populated with Muslim Americans. Cruz cited the attacks in Belgium as his reasoning, but still drew rancor from many, including the chief of the New York Police Department. Cruz continued on Wednesday to push for broader surveillance of Muslim Americans.
“Some would say,” Cruz said snidely, “that all I’m doing is offering the Christian version of the kind of religiously based quackery that Al Qaeda and ISIS use. But the differences between me and ISIS are plain for everyone to see. They are willing to kill innocent people and blow them up in the name of Allah, but I am willing to carpet bomb entire areas, ensuring massive civilian casualties in the name of America, freedom, and our One True American God, amen!”
Cruz said that ultimately he “will never back down” from his push to “fight radical religious terrorism with a religious extremism that is better” because “it’s Christian and American.” He also said there was “one other really big reason” he feels justified in his rhetoric.
“They started it, guys,” Cruz said with a tone that sounded an awful lot like a whiny teenager.
Even after his victory in Utah, Cruz still trails Donald Trump by a wide margin in terms of delegates pledged to him for Republican National Convention this summer. It is widely assumed a brokered convention will take place, and that Cruz still may not be able to secure his party’s nomination in that scenario either.