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Cruz’s campaign sent out a 60-second jingle called “If You’re Gonna Run In Texas,” that, among other things, mocks Beto O’Rourke for going by the name Beto instead of his given name, Robert. O’Rourke won the Texas Democratic primary on Monday, securing his spot to face the Republican senator during the midterms later this year.
“Liberal Robert wanted to fit in, so he changed his name to Beto and hid it with a grin,” the song says.
However, the Republican senator also goes by a different name than his given name, Rafael Edward Cruz.
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
Help #KeepTexasRed: https://t.co/PVsiCtbbyL #CruzCrew #TXSen pic.twitter.com/OxK61gZ0ek
When confronted about the hypocritical nature of the jingle by CNN‘s Chris Cuomo, Cruz tried to deflect by saying his father’s immigration from Cuba was the “American dream.” But soon enough, he addressed the song.
“In terms of the jingle, some of it is just have a sense of humor,” the senator told Cuomo.
O’Rourke said he has gone by Beto since he was born, telling the news outlet that “its kind of a nickname for Robert in El Paso. It just stuck.”
The song also attacks O’Rourke for his positions on immigration and gun reform.
O’Rourke has raised significantly more money than Cruz so far in 2018, perhaps a reason the Republican senator was quick to begin his campaign attacks against his Democrat opponent.
Andrew Wyrich is a politics staff writer for the Daily Dot, covering the intersection of politics and the internet. Andrew has written for USA Today, NorthJersey.com, and other newspapers and websites. His work has been recognized by the Society of the Silurians, Investigative Reporters & Editors (IRE), and the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ).