Democratic Senate nominee Beto O’Rourke has recently learned a powerful lesson — don’t mess with Texas.
With the midterm elections just weeks away, the feud between Texas Sen. Ted Cruz and O’Rourke, his Democratic challenger, continues to heat up.
As O’Rourke continues to win the hearts of many top Democrats, his authenticity has been brought into question after many conservatives pointed to his nickname that gives the false impression of a Latino descent.
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Cruz, who is the son of a Cuban immigrant, has mocked O’Rourke for trying to “fit in” by changing his name to make it sound more Hispanic for the liberal voters.
Earlier this year, Cruz released an ad slamming the Democratic nominee for changing his name and hiding “it with a grin.”
FIRST LISTEN: our new 60-second statewide radio ad introducing our liberal opponent, Congressman Robert O’Rourke, to Texas voters.
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) March 7, 2018
“If you are going to run in Texas, you can’t be a liberal man. I remember reading stories, liberal Robert wanted to fit in,” the ad says. “So he changed his name to Beto and hid it with a grin.”
Cruz, who’s given name is Rafael Edward Cruz, mocked O’Rourke for not using his legal name, Robert.
“You’re absolutely right. My name is Rafael Edward Cruz,” Cruz acknowledged. “I am the son of my father Rafael Cruz, an immigrant from Cuba who came to Texas with nothing.”
On Monday, first son Donald Trump Jr. also slammed O’Rourke for “pretending” to be Latino.
He wrote on Twitter, “What’s authentic about an Irish guy pretending to be Hispanic? Asking for some friends Texas.”
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What’s authentic about an Irish guy pretending to be Hispanic? Asking for some friends Texas. https://t.co/c30OjHdN8j
— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) October 15, 2018
But Beto claims it’s a nickname that he has had since he was born.
“My parents have called me Beto from day one, and it’s just — it’s kind of a nickname for Robert in El Paso. It just stuck,” he said in an interview.
As of Monday afternoon, his so-called Latino nickname still was not helping him in the polls.
Just weeks away from the elections, Cruz leads O’Rourke by about 7 points, according to a RealClearPolitics poll.
–The Horn editorial team