Sen. Ted Cruz said on Thursday that the Obama administration has “over and over again” willfully ignored “ample information” that could have prevented terrorist attacks.
Speaking on the Senate floor, the Texas senator lambasted Democrats for proposing increased gun controls in the wake of the Orlando, Florida, shooting and instead said that elected officials should be focused on preventing terrorism.
Over and over again, we have seen the Obama administration having ample information to stop a terrorist attack, and yet because of the political correctness, because of the ideology of this administration that won’t even say the word “jihad,” won’t even say the words “radical Islamic terrorism,” they look the other way and the attacks go forward.
He argued that the Obama administration had “plunged its head in the sand like an ostrich” and turned a blind eye to information that could have likely prevented the Boston Marathon bombing, the Fort Hood shooting, and the San Bernardino, California, attack.
Cruz also suggested that the Obama administration failed to “connect the dots” with the Orlando shooter, Omar Mateen, something that he said was “directly connected” to Obama’s “refusal to acknowledge what it is we’re fighting.”
“We had all the information we need on Mateen to keep a very close eye on him. And yet if that’s not what you’re fighting, then you close the investigation and yet another attack goes forward,” he said.
The conservative firebrand, who ran an unsuccessful bid for the White House in 2016, called it a “willful blindness” that “ignores the global jihad we’re facing.”
“This body should not be engaged in political games,” Cruz said. “We should be focused on the threat and keeping America safe and defeating radical Islamic terrorism.”
Cruz’s remarks came the same day Sen. John McCain said that Obama was “directly responsible” for the Orlando attack, a comment the Arizona lawmaker quickly clarified.
Presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump has peddled similar rhetoric. Most recently, he suggested that Obama was sympathetic toward radical groups.