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On The Trail: Ted Cruz takes small government message to New Hampshire

Texas senator is in a close race for second place in the Granite State’s GOP primary

♦By Patrick Scanlan, Chickenfriedpolitics.com contributor

on-the-trail-new-hampshireNORTH CONWAY, New Hampshire (CFP) — U.S. Senator Ted Cruz of Texas has been braving the cold New Hampshire weather in hopes of scoring support for his presidential bid from those fed up with the federal government and “establishment politics.”

In North Conway, Cruz met with about 100 supporters packed into historic Zeb’s General Store on January 19. Outside the store, supporters braving the cold held signs that read, “Join the NH Rebellion, Stop the Corruption,” and “Secure Our Border.”

cruz-nh

Ted Cruz campaigns in New Hampshire

“We are here because our constitutional rights are threatened every day,” Cruz said, citing what he called infringements on First and Second Amendment rights. He also lamented the size of the current federal government, including “the alphabet soup of agencies that have been killing small business.”

Cruz promised to “repeal every word of Obamacare,” and “keep the government from getting between us and our doctors,” while also pursuing an investigation into Planned Parenthood.

The group, which is the nation’s largest abortion provider, came under fire from Cruz and other conservatives after uncover videos emerged showing Planned Parenthood officials discussing procurement of fetal tissue.

Though Cruz called for decreases in government healthcare regulation, he stressed the importance of “honoring the commitments made to every soldier, sailor and marine.”

While speaking about foreign policy issues, Cruz pledged that during his first day in office he will “rip to shreds the catastrophic Iranian nuclear deal,” so that “under no circumstances will Iran be able to acquire nuclear weapons.” He also spent time addressing the threat of ISIS to the United States.

“We need a commander-in-chief who will say to the world, ‘We will defeat radical Islamic terrorism. We will destroy ISIS.’ If we stand as one and defend freedom and Judeo-Christian values, we will restore the last best hope for mankind.”

While making his case to the New Hampshire voters, Cruz also embraced his role as a outsider who is disliked by the Washington establishment.

“If you see a candidate that Washington embraces, run and hide,” he said.

Recent polling in New Hampshire shows Cruz battling for second place with U.S. Senator Marco Rubio of Florida, former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, and Ohio Governor John Kasich, well behind Donald Trump.

On The Trail: Rand Paul pitches smaller government, constitutional rights at New Hampshire event

Kentucky senator says labeling genetically modified foods would be overregulation

♦By Patrick Scanlan, Chickenfriedpolitics.com contributor

on-the-trail-new-hampshireSALEM, New Hampshire (CFP) — Before an enthusiastic crowd of about 75 voters, U.S. Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky took his GOP presidential campaign to the first-in-the-nation primary state of New Hampshire, offering up his critique of a government that he says has become too large, spends too much money and is too oppressive toward its citizens.

In a September 25 town hall event organized by the Greater Salem Chamber of Commerce, Paul expressed his wish that “our government should be minding their own business more,” citing examples of NSA spying, welfare programs, and Planned Parenthood funding.

Rand Paul in Salem, New Hampshire

Rand Paul in Salem, New Hampshire

He did not, however, place the blame solely on Democrats, saying these problems aren’t solely the fault of one party. He said the first priority of the national government should be defense, while most other programs, especially social programs, should be left up to state governments to design and implement.

Paul also said the Republican Party can attract younger voters by advocating strict protection of constitutional guarantees in the Bill of Rights. In that regard, he highlighted his support for the Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms, touching on another issue important to conservative voters.

Paul also answered questions from attendees at the event, who hailed from New Hampshire as well as neighboring Massachusetts.

One question concerned dealing with undocumented immigrants, to which Paul responded by saying that “immigrants who came to the U.S. are by and large good people, but we must secure the border.”

A woman representing group supporting labeling of genetically modified foods asked Paul how he would vote on current legislation imposing such labeling, an issue important to many New Hampshire residents who are part of local and sustainable food movements. He responded that if the movement is popular, then labeling should be left up to the marketplace because he views this, and other similar issues, as overregulation.

When asked about Iran, Paul reiterated that negotiations and open communication are essential to maintaining an effective relationship with Iran. He said that sanctions have gone a long way to pushing Iran in the right direction, but he still does not trust the Tehran regime.

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