Ted Cruz, David Dewhurst Speak at Texas GOP State Convention

Yahoo Contributor Network

Saturday at the Texas Republican State Convention in Fort Worth featured dueling speeches by Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst and former Solicitor General Ted Cruz, candidates for the Senate.

Cruz touts conservative and tea party support

Cruz attempted to appeal to the conservatives that he was the right candidate, according to KFAF-TV. He noted his endorsements from Sarah Palin, Rick Santorum and Fox News' Sean Hannity.

Cruz attacks Dewhurst

Cruz laid into his opponent for what he termed "$10 million in nasty false attack ads, trying to convince every Texan that I'm a red Chinese Communist who wants to eat your children." Cruz was referring to a series of Dewhurst ads that accused him of representing a Chinese firm in a patent dispute with an American inventor, darkly hinting he was hurting American businesses and jobs for money.

Dewhurst gets mixed reception

When Gov. Rick Perry mentioned Dewhurst in his speech Thursday, boos erupted from the audience. While the media reported the booing was directed at Perry, a participant in the convention interviewed for this article assured it was Dewhurst who was receiving the booing. When Dewhurst spoke, he was greeted by scattered booing again, according to the Texas Tribune. One man yelled, "Tell the truth!"

Dewhurst touts conservative credentials

Dewhurst cast himself as the conservative outsider going against a lawyer financed by special interests such as the Club for Growth, according to the Texas Tribune. Though a man of considerable wealth, he cast himself as a self-made man who had overcome adversity while growing up.

Cruz received enthusiastically, Dewhurst greeted politely

The Texas Tribune suggests Cruz was received by the crowd with greater enthusiasm than Dewhurst. Cruz entered the auditorium to the song "Eye of the Tiger." Despite the booing, Dewhurst's reception was described as being more subdued and polite than enthusiastic.

The bottom line

While Texas Republicans are united in their desire to see President Barack Obama off to the private sector, according to the Houston Chronicle, divisions remain mainly between the establishment and tea party activists. There was also a strong contingent of Ron Paul supporters trying to score some delegates for the national convention in Tampa, Fla. Despite these and other disagreements, the Republican Party remains dominate in Texas and likely to hold on to every statewide office for the foreseeable future.

Texas resident Mark Whittington writes about state issues for the Yahoo! Contributor Network.

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