Senator Ted Cruz previously was in favor of a pathway to legalization for undocumented immigrants, but in recent years his views have radicalized and he has publicly called for the DACA program to be scrapped. He has participated in events organized by anti-immigrant groups. During a campaign stop in 2016, Cruz berated a DACA recipient who shared her story with the Senator: “I would note, if you’re a DACA recipient it means that you were brought here illegally, and violating the laws has consequences.”
- Senator Cruz was elected to the Senate in 2012 with the support of the Tea Party.
- Prior to being elected Texas’s junior U.S. Senator, Cruz served as the state’s Solicitor General. Two of his mentees in the solicitor general’s office, Chip Roy and Scott A. Keller, spearheaded many of the legal attacks on Dreamers and Obama Administration immigration policies, including U.S. v Texas.
- Senator Cruz has aligned himself with anti-immigrant groups as they’ve attacked commonsense immigration reform and DACA recipients, and has used their misleading and false reports as sources.
- In 2013, Senators Cruz and Sessions, and Reps. King and Brooks spoke at a rally organized by an anti-immigrant front group. Cruz’s policies are in lockstep with FAIR and its congressional allies, and during the 2016 presidential race he bragged about defeating comprehensive immigration reform with Senator Sessions.
- In 2015, former FAIR staffer John Zadrozny joined Senator Ted Cruz’s team as counsel and then joined Trump’s State Department after he took office.
- In previous years, Cruz was open to providing a path to legalization for undocumented immigrants and supported expanding legal immigration. But in an attempt to compete with then-candidate Donald Trump’s extreme views on immigration policy during the 2016 presidential race, he quickly abandoned some of his earlier positions and matched his rival’s calls to end birthright citizenship, “freeze” legal immigration channels and enact mass deportation. His immigration positions since have only become more extreme.
- In an October 2018 interview with the Texas Tribune, Sen. Cruz doubled down on his opposition to birthright citizenship, saying, “Virtually every country on Earth doesn’t allow children of those there illegally to become citizens automatically, that isn’t a policy that makes any sense.”
- In January of 2018, as the Senate was debating protections for DACA recipients, Senator Cruz attacked his fellow Republican members of Congress for working on the bipartisan measures saying, “at the time virtually every Republican denounced executive action as unconstitutional, as lawless, as wrong, and yet today far too many Senate Republicans are staking out a place well to the left of President Obama, it’s almost as if elections don’t penetrate. We need to be listening to the voters. I do not know a single Republican, not one in this body, not one in the House of Representatives, who was elected on a promise of: I will go to the left of Barack Obama on immigration.”
- In 2014, Cruz stated that ending DACA was a “top priority.” He introduced the Protect Children and Families Through the Rule of Law Act, S.2666, which would have defunded DACA. It died in the Senate but a similar bill, H.R.5272, offered by Rep. Blackburn, passed the House by recorded vote on August 1, 2014.
- In June 2018, Cruz defended the Trump Administration’s family separation policy calling it “inevitable.”
- Cruz, breaking with some of his Republican colleagues in TX, offered an endorsement of President Trump’s first Muslim ban and berated then Acting Attorney General Sally Yates for her opposition to the ban, calling her position “arguments that we can expect litigants to bring — partisan litigants who disagree with the policy decision of the president.”