A clip of Senator Ted Cruz’s opponent, Beto O’Rourke, went viral after Hollywood stars fell in love with his answer to a question about the NFL national anthem protests — and Sen. Cruz couldn’t be more excited to use it against him.
During a campaign event, O’Rourke was asked what he thought of the national anthem protests. Not only did O’Rourke think the protests weren’t disrespectful, he said he could think of “nothing more American than to peacefully stand up, or take a knee, for your rights, anytime, anywhere, any place.”
‘I can think of nothing more American.’ — Beto O’Rourke — the man taking on Ted Cruz — brilliantly explains why NFL players kneeling during the anthem is not disrespectful pic.twitter.com/bEqOAYpxEL
— NowThis (@nowthisnews) August 21, 2018
Hollywood stars from Julia Louis-Dreyfus to Ellen Degeneres loved the clip. In fact, Kevin Bacon even shared the video, prompting this response from Sen. Cruz:
Most Texans stand for the flag, but Hollywood liberals are so excited that Beto is siding with NFL players protesting the national anthem that Kevin Bacon just retweeted it. That means all of us us can now win Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon! https://t.co/8oWpL1AuyF
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) August 23, 2018
Unfortunately for O’Rourke, the Kevin Bacon joke isn’t where Cruz left it. He dropped this blistering attack ad in response to the clip, too.
The ad shows segments of O’Rourke’s clip, followed by a response from retired Marine Corps Sergeant Tim Lee. Lee lost his legs after stepping on a landmine while serving in Vietnam.
“Who would’ve ever believed that we would have issues about whether you’re going to stand during the national anthem or not?” asked Lee. “I gave two legs for this country. I’m not able to stand, but I sure expect you to stand for me when that national anthem is being played.”
Cruz’s ad concludes with one question for the people of Texas: “In November, where will you stand?”
After some polling predictions, the answer to that question is on the minds of many.
The ad dropped the same day as an Emerson poll showed that Cruz and O’Rourke were within a point of each other. Real Clear Politics has Cruz up by 5.5 points, but that includes polls from as early as May.
The Emerson poll showed 21 percent of respondents were undecided, meaning these last few months of campaign messaging will play an important role as Texans near election day.