Reality Check: First TV ad for U.S. Senate candidate Ted Cruz

Print
Email
|

by BRAD WATSON / WFAA.com

WFAA

Posted on April 7, 2012 at 10:35 PM

With the Texas primary set for May 29, the campaign for the Republican nomination for U.S. Senate is picking up, and TV ads are starting to appear.

Candidate Ted Cruz has started airing his first ad, and although some of its claims are accurate, others are false or misleading.

The ad introduces Cruz as a conservative fighter citing his record as Solicitor General of Texas, the attorney who argues cases before the U.S. Supreme Court.

In the commercial, the announcer states: "When the U.N. and World Court overruled a Texas jury's verdict to execute an illegal alien for raping and murdering two teenage girls, Ted Cruz fought all the way to the Supreme Court and he delivered."

The first part of that claim is false.

The U.N. World Court did not overrule a Harris County jury's verdict and death sentence for Texas death row inmate and Mexican national Jose Medellin in the rapes and murders of two teenage girls in 1993.

In a 2004 case, the World Court did rule the United States breached a treaty by failing to inform Medellin that he could contact the Mexican consul for help after his arrest.

President George W. Bush abided by the World Court ruling and ordered Texas to reconsider Medellin's case, but Texas refused, claiming Bush didn't have that power — and the U.S. Supreme Court agreed.

The ad's claim is true that Cruz "delivered" by successfully arguing the case for Texas before the court. But the ad implies Cruz alone fought all the way to the Supreme Court, and that's misleading, since he was appointed by and worked for Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott, who was officially responsible for the case.

In another Cruz claim, the ad's announcer says: "Politicians from both parties have broken promises, driven us to the brink of bankruptcy, and failed to secure the border."

Not so fast on that border security claim... it's up for debate.

Although true that bullets from Mexico hit El Paso City Hall in 2010 as a graphic in the ad shows, crime stats from CQ Press, an independent research organization, show El Paso has the lowest crime rate among U.S. cities over 500,000.

Border apprehensions in fiscal year 2011 were down to the lowest level since the 1970s, according to the Department of Homeland Security.

But the Texas Border Coalition, a group of elected officials along the U.S.-Mexico frontier, says there's just a 28 percent chance a drug smuggler will get caught at a port of entry.

Cruz, an underdog in this race, hopes his ad comes through.

E-mail bwatson@wfaa.com

Print
Email
|