Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) claims Democrats "can't admit" their gratitude over his Supreme Court victory that challenged federal limits on the amount of funds candidates can raise from donors to pay back personal debt after elections.
The senator scored a major win this week in the high court's 6-3 opinion that struck down a $250,000 limit on donations collected after an election that campaigns can use to repay a candidate's loans. Cruz said his GOP colleagues thanked him for his legal challenge to the Federal Election Commission's rules but that Democrats and the "corrupt corporate media" framed it as a new loophole to "bribe senators" legally.
SUPREME COURT STRIKES DOWN CANDIDATE REPAYMENT RULES IN CASE BROUGHT BY TED CRUZ
"I cannot tell you how many current senators and current House members have come up to me and said thank you," Cruz said Thursday on his podcast, Verdict with Ted Cruz.
Cruz claimed there was a level of gratitude "even among Democrats" but that "they can't admit it because their side is a big fan of stifling the free speech."
The opinion, authored by Chief Justice John Roberts and joined by justices appointed by former Republican presidents, argued the law known as the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002 violated First Amendment rights because it "burdens core political speech without proper justification."
While Justice Elena Kagan led a dissent joined by Democratic-appointed justices arguing the decision will "further" collapse the U.S. political system, she conceded that candidates from both political parties will benefit from the ruling, writing, "The only loser is the public."
"When they give money to repay the victor’s loan, they know — not merely hope — he will be in a position to perform official favors," Kagan wrote.
Some Democrats publicly condemned the high court's decision, including Rhode Island Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, who slammed the ruling as "another victory for right-wing donors in their assault on our campaign finance system," according to a press readout.
Cruz's case stems from a 2018 episode when he loaned his campaign $260,000 — $10,000 more than the amount candidates can legally be repaid from post-election funds under the rule. Cruz was seeking a second six-year term for the Senate, a race he won.
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Cruz said his predecessor, former Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX), was in favor of the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act because it gave a more competitive edge for newcomers to challenge incumbents.
"They said, 'Look, we don't want someone to run against us and loan their campaign a million bucks or 5 million bucks — they might beat us,'" added Cruz, who clerked for the late Supreme Court Chief Justice William Rehnquist and argued numerous cases before the high court as Texas solicitor general.