Texas voters elected their first Hispanic U.S. senator Tuesday, as Republican Ted Cruz easily defeated Democrat Paul Sadler, 56 percent to 41 percent.
Cruz called his win a “magical journey.”
“When we started I was at 2 percent in the polls. And they said it was impossible,” Cruz reminded supporters at his victory party in Houston.
“I’m pleased to confirm to you, that the people of Texas have elected a new senator,” he added as the ballroom full of fans cheered wildly.
A year ago the name Ted Cruz barely registered with the Texans he’ll now represent in Washington,D.C.
Cruz is the son of a Cuban immigrant, the former top appellate attorney for the state, an upstart candidate from Houston who pledged allegiance to the U.S. Constitution. He did that again Election Night as he talked about returning the nation to its founding principles.
“To free enterprise, fiscal responsibility, individual liberty and to the Constitution,” he said.
Along the way Cruz’s powerful speech making, as well as his calls for limiting government and reducing the debt, caught on. Tea party voters and conservative activists rallied to support him. He upset Lt. Governor David Dewhurst to win the GOP Senate nomination.
In claiming victory, Cruz said he’s willing to work with President Obama to reduce the deficit if Obama will alter his path. And if he doesn’t?
“I will spend every waking moment working to lead the fight to stop it,” Cruz promised.
In conceding the race to Cruz, Democrat Paul Sadler said he was vastly outspent and unable to raise the needed money because many Texans don’t believe a Democrat can win statewide.
Sadler, speaking in Austin, said he took on the uphill battle because someone needed to challenge some of the policies Republicans were promoting.