WASHINGTON — Speaking to a small gathering of pro-life activists Thursday, Ted Cruz frankly predicted that Republicans will lose the White House in 2016 if they “present a milquetoast alternative” as their nominee.
The Texas Republican acknowledged that he is actively considering a run for the White House himself, seemingly positioning himself as the type of candidate that evangelicals and the conservative grassroots can get behind.
“I’m looking at the race very, very seriously,” Cruz told the activists. “And I will tell you — the encouragement, the support we are receiving from the grassroots, all across the country, has been breathtaking.”
Hundreds of thousands of anti-abortion activists are in Washington for the annual March for Life. Cruz, speaking to about 30 activists in a small room in the Capitol, argued Thursday that Republicans “have to have the courage to stand.”
“If we present a milquetoast alternative, that is a path to defeat,” Cruz said. “I agree very much with Ronald Reagan who says we paint not in pale pastels but bold colors. Give a choice and give people a reason to show up and fight and paint.”
One pro-life attendee told Cruz she wanted him to run for president, and pressed him to name who he would name as his running mate.
Cruz, who thanked the attendees for praying for him, didn’t name any potential vice presidential picks, but said: “I think this next election, it is now or never. The stakes have never been higher than they are right now.”
“And if we do not stand today,” he continued, “we risk losing the greatest country in the history of the world. I do not believe that will happen. And I will give you my word, I will do everything within my ability to stand with you and fight with you so that we preserve this country.”
During his remarks on the pro-life movement, Cruz spoke of “the incredible advances we are making.”
“It wasn’t too long [ago] that the mainstream media, that society said that ‘the pro-life movement is done, this issue is settled, give it up, there’s no going back,’” Cruz said. “Well let me tell you something: we are making amazing progress in the fight to value every precious life from the moment of conception to moment of natural death.”