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Sen. Cruz Supports Local Dallas Business Owner Standing for Liberty & Justice as Texas Begins Re-Opening Economy

DALLAS, Texas - As Texas begins to re-open its economy, U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) today got a haircut at Salon à la Mode to show his support for salon owner Shelley Luther, who was wrongly imprisoned when she refused to apologize for trying to earn a living and provide for her family amid the coronavirus pandemic. Luther, who was released from jail last night following an order from the Texas Supreme Court, safely re-opened her salon in accordance with Texas law this morning. After his haircut, Sen. Cruz spoke with reporters. Watch the full press conference here. Photos may be viewed here. Excerpts are below.

WATCH: Sen. Cruz: I'm Proud to Stand With Shelley Luther

Sen. Cruz, who has spoken out about the dangers of pandemic authoritarianism and abuses of power by local officials, commended Luther for standing against injustice, saying:

"I'm proud to stand with Shelley Luther. What happened to her was wrong. It was ridiculous to see somebody sentenced to seven days in jail for cutting hair. That's not right. That's not justice. That's not Texas."

"When [Shelley] spoke up, she wasn't just speaking up for herself, she wasn't just speaking up for her family, she wasn't even just speaking up for the women and men who work in small business. She was speaking up for 29 million Texans across our state. She was speaking up for justice."

"In the United States, elected officials don't have the right to demand of citizens that they apologize for anything. That's not the way our system works."

He continued, noting the steps Luther has taken to minimize the spread of the virus and keep her stylists and customers safe, saying:

"Texans believe in common sense. If you look at how Shelley's running her business - she's wearing a mask, I'm wearing a mask. Inside, when I got my hair cut, they cleaned every seat down with disinfectant. The stylist who cut my hair, she cleaned her hands with disinfectant [...] Most Texans understand there is a balance of common sense. Yes, we want to prevent the spread of this disease. Yes, we want to be safe. We want to keep our families safe. All of us want to. But at the same time, people [have] got to be able to earn a living, they've got to be able to provide for their kids. Unfortunately, in this time of crisis, we have seen too many instances across the country of abuse of power."

Sen. Cruz concluded urging Texans to follow social distancing measures and medical guidelines as people return to work to provide for their families, saying:

"We need to take reasonable steps to flatten the curve to stop the spread of this virus. We also need to let people provide for their families. We've got [nearly] 34 million people who have lost their jobs in the last two months. That's 20 percent of the American workforce. If we keep going down this road, of just shutting down the entire economy, there are going to be a lot of lives that are lost."

"This stuff is hard. It's a hard balance. But I think most Texans understand, we've got to strike a balance. We've got to be proactive and follow sound science and medical advice and keep people safe, but we also need to let people provide for their families. And Texans want to get back to work. I'm encouraged we're on the path to do that."

"Shelley, when you stood up there, you stood for Texans all across this state, and you stood for Americans all across the country who believe in liberty. And you did so with a simple, quiet grace that spoke volumes. And so I'm proud to stand with you. Thank you Shelley."

With the unemployment rate currently at 14.7 percent, the worst since the Great Depression, Americans are hurting. In a new video ‘Stronger Together: America's Recovery,' Sen. Cruz calls on Congress to focus on getting the economy back on its feet, saying:

"Our priority has to be coming out of this and getting America back to work. We've got to make it feasible to provide for your family. Here in Congress, our priority needs to be recovery. Tax reform, regulatory reform, cutting the taxes and burdens on small businesses that are just now opening their doors, so that they can survive, so that they can thrive, so they can provide the jobs Americans need to come back."

WATCH: Stronger Together: America's Recovery

Earlier this week, Sen. Cruz outlined his priorities for America's recovery in an op-ed for The Hill, including:

  • Re-opening our economy and getting Americans back to work.
  • Pushing pause on spending and not allowing Speaker Pelosi to hijack discussions going forward.
  • Cutting taxes and lifting regulations to help grow the economy out of this crisis.
  • Recognizing that China bears responsibility for endangering millions of lives and holding them accountable.