MIDLAND, TX (KWES) - What is Texas? Incumbent state senator Ted Cruz asked and answered that question in front of many supporters in Midland, Wednesday.
"I am so bullish on the Permian Basin. I love Midland/Odessa. I love the people out here. I love the values, West Texas values. If the whole country could adopt West Texas values, it would turn the country around," said Cruz.
The senator cracked jokes but pulled no punches on issues and what's ahead in his campaign to seek re-election.
Cruz touched on his challenger, Congressman Beto O'Rourke, and how the race for the senate seat will be on the eyes and minds of many.
"I'll tell you the very same principals the same values we were fighting for in the presidential race are exactly what I'm fighting for in the Senate. Look at the Senate right now, the Senate's become the battlefield. The Senate is incredibly narrow, 51 Republicans," said Cruz.
The 2nd amendment has been a hot topic as well following recent deadly shootings in Parkland, Florida and Sutherland Springs, Texas to name a few instances.
Senator Cruz recalled what it was like to visit the church following the shooting.
Cruz stated hi believe that people should have the right to own firearms especially if they wanted to protect their family. The topic of guns started a tense back and forth between Cruz and Karen Howard-Winters, of the Ector County Democratic Club.
Being in the Permian Basin, Cruz talked about the oil and gas industry, he says Texas will always be the world leader in production but its production he believes can only get stronger especially with the growing economy and President Trump listening to his thoughts on North American Free Trade Agreement.
"Mexico has vast energy resources, oil, and gas that are not being adequately developed. If as part of NAFTA re-negotiations we open those markets that will produce thousands of high paying jobs in Mexico but naturally the place they'll look for that expertise is Texas. That will produce thousands of high paying jobs in Texas many of them right here in the Permian Basin," said Cruz.
Senator Cruz added Texas and the people of the state have a lot in common. He hopes they remember it during the months leading up to and when they hit the polls in November.
Cruz's challenger, Democratic candidate Beto O'Rourke will be in Midland on Saturday. Tune in to NewsWest 9 Weekend to learn more about his visit.