Sen. Cruz: I can Assuredly Tell the American People: Ms. Gupta is Not a Moderate, is Not Mainstream, but is Rather an Extreme Political Activist
Urges his colleagues to vote against Vanita Gupta for Associate Attorney General
WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) today delivered floor remarks urging his colleagues to vote against President Biden's nominee for Associate Attorney General, Vanita Gupta. Excerpts of his remarks are below.
WATCH: Sen. Cruz: Vanita Gupta & Kristen Clarke Are Two of the Most Radical Nominees to Ever Be Put Forward
"This nominee's record is that of an extreme partisan ideologue. I can assuredly tell the American people Ms. Gupta is not a moderate, is not mainstream, but is rather an extreme political activist that the Democrats want to be the number three lawyer at the Department of Justice.
"When she testified before the Judiciary Committee last month, she consistently dodged questions. She wouldn't answer if she supported any restrictions whatsoever on abortion. She wouldn't answer not on partial birth abortion, not on anything. When it comes to the Second Amendment, I asked Ms. Gupta if she thought the Heller decision, the landmark decision upholding the individual right to keep and bear arms, if that decision was rightly decided, she refused to answer that question.
"For years, she has demonstrated a persistent hostility to religious liberty, such as when she defended the Obama administration's targeting and persecution of the Little Sisters of the Poor. Not too long ago, religious liberty was a bipartisan commitment in this body. The Religious Freedom Restoration Act was introduced by then-Representative Chuck Schumer. Now the Senate majority leader, it passed the House unanimously. It passed the Senate 93 to three and was signed into law by Democratic President Bill Clinton. Sadly, today's Democrat Party has abandoned religious liberty that is no longer a commitment. Instead, today's Democratic Party embraces extreme ideas like the Equality Act, which has just come out of the House of Representatives, a radical piece of legislation that, among other things, explicitly repeals major parts of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act. Designed to take away your religious liberty. Ms. Gupta has been a vocal defender of the misnamed Equality Act, she lobbied for its passage, a fact that she didn't disclose to the committee initially when she was before the Judiciary Committee. I asked if she agreed with the provisions in the Equality Act that take away religious liberty protections from Americans. Again, Ms. Gupta refused to answer that question too.
"Ms. Gupta has demonstrated radical hostility to school choice, so much so that when she served in the Department of Justice during the Obama Biden administration, she helped intervene in a case trying to kill a Louisiana school choice program. Even though many of the African-American parents in Louisiana strongly supported and desperately needed that program. The federal court involved in this case even reprimanded the Department of Justice under her leadership for ineffectively lawyering in this case. At the judiciary hearing of Ms. Gupta last month, I asked if she regretted using the Department of Justice to fight against the school choice program that was providing hope and opportunity to low income minority kids in Louisiana. Again, she refused to provide a straightforward answer.
"When it comes to the funding the police, it is here that Miss Gupta is most radical. Last year, Ms. Gupta in a written filing with this Senate encouraged Congress to, ‘Reexamine federal spending priorities and shrink the footprint of the police and criminal legal system in this country.' She also encouraged reallocating resources, writing, ‘Some people call it defunding the police, other people call it divest, invest, but whatever you call it, if you care about mass incarceration, you have to care about skewed funding priorities.' Now, these weren't Ms. Gupta's college writings. These weren't scribblings on a post-it that she made somewhere. These statements were from last year, submitted to the United States Senate and on their face and unequivocally advocate for defunding the police."
"Unfortunately, the Democratic Party has changed. The Democratic Party today is radicalized. They hate Donald Trump. Now, I understand Donald Trump is a unique character. I understand that his existence and every word he uttered enraged Democrats. They've emerged from four years of the Trump administration more radical than any majority party in this body ever has been. There are quite a few Democrats, who when they're at home, like to pretend otherwise. Today is a perfect opportunity to demonstrate that that pretense is not mere empty words. But in fact, if you don't support abolishing the police, then don't support abolishing the police. And if you don't support celebrating cop killers, then don't confirm people who have celebrated cop killers to senior positions in the U.S. Department of Justice."
Watch Sen. Cruz question Vanita Gupta in her Judiciary Committee confirmation hearing here.