During Wednesday's edition of CNN's New Day, co-host Alisyn Camerota treated Democratic Senate Candidate Beto O'Rourke (D-TX) to a love fest.
O’Rourke appeared on New Day just hours after securing a victory in the Texas Democratic Senate Primary, clearing the way for him to face off with incumbent Republican Senator Ted Cruz in the general election.
Camerota teed up a jingle compiled by the Cruz campaign attacking O’Rourke for his liberal positions on immigration and guns. Camerota hoped that O’Rourke would create a punk rock jingle in response to that ad, citing his musical background referenced in a glowing CNN report that aired earlier this week: “Now Congressman, I know you have a punk rock past. Do you plan to compose a punk rock song to counter that jingle?”
Rather than answer her question directly, O’Rourke recited some liberal talking points. The dodge did not go over well with Camerota, who asked him why he did not take her “punk rock bait.” O’Rourke responded by correctly pointing out that “I just don’t think that’s what folks in Texas want us to focus on.”
Camerota closed the interview by saying “Yeah, look, I’m just saying as a Jersey girl, you know, punk rock, own it. Okay, Congressman Beto O’Rourke, thank you very much. Great to talk to you.” If Camerota ever decides to change careers, the O’Rourke campaign could surely consider hiring her as a Campaign Strategist.
O’Rourke will need all of the help he can find as he tries to turn a Texas Senate seat blue for the first time in a quarter century. Democratic Senator Lloyd Bentsen won re-election to the Senate seat currently held by Cruz in 1988 while concurrently running as the Democratic nominee for Vice President alongside Massachusetts liberal Michael Dukakis. In 1993, Bentsen left to accept a job in the Clinton Administration and Texas has not had a Democratic Senator since. The media will try to play up high Democratic turnout in Tuesday’s Texas primary as a sign of a blue wave even though half a million more Republicans than Democrats voted in the primaries.
CNN New Day
ALISYN CAMEROTA: Okay so your opponent Ted Cruz, has put out a catchy jingle campaign ad attacking you on a couple of different things including your name. Here it is.
NARRATOR, TED CRUZ FOR SENATE AD: I remember reading stories, liberal Robert wanted to fit in, so he changed his name to Beto and hid it with a grin. Beto wants those open borders and he wants to take our guns. Not a chance on earth he’ll get a vote from millions of Texans.
CAMEROTA: Now Congressman, I know you have a punk rock past. Do you plan to compose a punk rock song to counter that jingle?
REP. BETO O’ROURKE: Here’s what I’m going to do. I’m going to continue to meet with and work with my fellow Texans on the big issues that we want Texas to lead on. We are the defining immigrant state. We should be leading the way on immigration reform, not being the sole Senator, as Ted Cruz was, to turn his back on Texas and this opportunity to lead on an issue that we know better than anyone else in any other part of the country. I want to make sure that Texas goes from being the least insured state in the country to leading the way to ensure that every single American can see their doctor or provider or afford their medication so that they can live to their full potential, finish their education, go to work, pay taxes, create a business, hire more Americans. I want to make sure that we get our democracy back and return it to the people and get corporations and PACS and lobbyists and special interests out of the halls of Congress and running this campaign in the most grassroots fashion that we’ve seen in Texas, all 254 counties, relying on people instead of PACs and corporations, that’s the way to do it.
CAMEROTA: But Congressman, why aren’t you taking my punk rock bait?
O’ROURKE: Because I just don’t think that’s what folks in Texas want us to focus on. I mean, we can get into name calling and talk about why the other person is such an, an awful guy or we can focus on the big things that we want to do for the future of our country, for the generations that will succeed us. This is the most critical moment in the most important year of our lifetimes and we’ve absolutely got to get it right. So we can focus on the small, mean, petty stuff, or we can be big, bold, courageous and confident. I think that is Texas, that’s our distinction as a state. That’s our opportunity to lead and that’s the way I’m going to stay focused going forward in this campaign.
CAMEROTA: Yeah, look, I’m just saying as a Jersey girl, you know, punk rock, own it. Okay, Congressman Beto O’Rourke, thank you very much. Great to talk to you.