Cruz Avoids Endorsing Trump, Arguing Instead for 'Return to Freedom'
Sen. Ted Cruz addressed the Republican National Convention, telling the audience "what's really at stake" this election.
He mentioned Donald Trump only in the beginning of the remarks, offering his congratulations for winning the nomination.
Cruz invoked fallen Dallas police officer Michael Smith and his 9-year-old daughter Caroline, who recalled her father asking ominously on the night he was gunned down, "What if this is the last time you ever kiss or hug me?"
"What if this, right now, is our last time?" Cruz asked the audience. "Our last moment to do something for our families and our country?"
Cruz said he wants to believe that President Obama and Hillary Clinton care about the nation's children's future, but there is a "profound difference in our two parties’ visions for the future."
"President Obama is a man who does everything backwards -- he wants to close Guantanamo Bay and open up our borders, he exports jobs and imports terrorists. Enough is enough."
Cruz then broke down what he described as a "better vision for our future: a return to freedom."
"Freedom means free speech, not politically correct safe spaces. Freedom means religious freedom, whether you are Christian or Jew, Muslim or atheist. Gay or straight, the Bill of Rights protects the rights of all of us to live according to our conscience," Cruz said.
He continued: "Freedom means the right to keep and bear arms, and protect your family. Freedom means Supreme Court Justices who don’t dictate policy, but instead follow the Constitution. And freedom means recognizing that our Constitution allows states to choose policies that reflect local values."
He said that without "diversity" among states, "what's the point of having states to begin with?"
Cruz asked those listening to "vote your conscience, vote for candidates up and down the ticket who you trust to defend our freedom and to be faithful to the Constitution."
"We will unite the party. We will unite the country by standing together for shared values, by standing for liberty."
Watch the speech above.