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Cruz leads O'Rourke by 7 pts in new CNN poll

A new CNN poll shows Sen. Ted Cruz leading Rep. Beto O'Rourke by 7 points in Texas, despite O'Rourke's record-breaking fundraising. The Lead panel discusses.

Posted: Oct 18, 2018 9:25 AM
Updated: Oct 18, 2018 9:25 AM

Democratic Rep. Beto O'Rourke aggressively cast Republican Sen. Ted Cruz as "all talk and no action" during the second -- and potentially final -- debate of the Texas Senate race Tuesday night.

The hour-long debate showcased a major shift in tone for O'Rourke, who rarely says the names of Cruz or President Donald Trump on the campaign trail and has often bypassed his opportunities to take direct shots at Cruz.

The change in approach could be necessary for O'Rourke. A new CNN poll out Tuesday showed Cruz with a 7 percentage point lead -- consistent with other recent surveys that have shown the Republican clearly ahead. O'Rourke had $22.9 million in the bank at the close of the third quarter of 2018, giving him enough money to advertise across the state in the race's final three weeks.

Minutes into the debate, as Cruz accused O'Rourke of supporting a $10-a-barrel tax on oil, the El Paso congressman shot back that Cruz is "dishonest."

"It's why the President called him 'Lying Ted,' and it's why the nickname stuck -- because it's true," he said.

The vote in question was a 2016 House GOP resolution that rejected the idea of a new oil tax. O'Rourke and most Democrats opposed the measure.

"Congressman O'Rourke sides with liberal extremists on the national level, instead of the people of Texas -- instead of jobs in Texas," Cruz said.

O'Rourke continued his more combative approach through the debate. He highlighted Cruz's 2016 bid for the Republican presidential nomination, saying Cruz hasn't visited all of the 254 counties in Texas, "but has been to all 99 in Iowa."

"Ted Cruz is for Ted Cruz," he said.

The debate showcased differences over social media regulation to combat foreign interference in election -- O'Rourke said he was open to it; Cruz was opposed -- and a stark split on the Supreme Court and the potential for the reversal of the Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion.

In a line that underscored Democratic worries that O'Rourke hasn't won over enough Latino voters, Cruz said: "The people of Texas, and I will say, especially the Hispanic community, we don't want to see taxpayer-funded, Medicaid-funded abortions."

A question over trade led to a battle about party control in Congress.

Cruz claimed that O'Rourke is the only Senate Democratic candidate this cycle who has explicitly supported Trump's impeachment.

He said that O'Rourke's election would lead to "two years of a partisan circus, shutting down the federal government in a witch hunt on the President."

"It's really interesting to hear you talk about a partisan circus after your last six years in the US Senate," O'Rourke fired back. "If you have this special relationship with President Trump, then where is the result of that? You are all talk and no action."

"I'm against tariffs. I'm against the trade war," Cruz said. "If we're erecting barriers and shutting down trade, that is a bad thing. This is one of the few issues where Congressman O'Rourke and I have some common ground."

The difference, Cruz said, is that he has a relationship with Trump and can advocate for expanded trade. He praised Trump for negotiating a "new NAFTA, a new trade deal," with benefits for Texas.

O'Rourke criticized Trump for alienating trade partners like Canada and Mexico, and said his trade war is "hurting no state more than it's hurting Texas."

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 115088

Reported Deaths: 3255
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Hinds7973177
DeSoto703979
Harrison522384
Jackson457884
Rankin394086
Madison383194
Lee357380
Forrest304678
Jones292484
Washington258399
Lafayette250443
Lauderdale2478135
Lamar225538
Oktibbeha202454
Bolivar201677
Neshoba1849111
Lowndes179962
Panola170040
Leflore167187
Sunflower162349
Warren154855
Monroe150673
Pontotoc147220
Marshall143129
Lincoln140157
Pike138456
Copiah137536
Scott125429
Coahoma124937
Grenada122638
Yazoo122234
Simpson121549
Union118825
Tate116839
Leake115041
Holmes114760
Itawamba113925
Pearl River113660
Adams108544
Prentiss106120
Wayne101722
Alcorn100112
George99218
Covington97527
Marion95042
Tippah90322
Newton86627
Chickasaw85526
Tallahatchie84526
Winston84121
Hancock84028
Tishomingo81241
Attala79426
Clarke75851
Clay69321
Jasper68717
Walthall63927
Calhoun62612
Noxubee59817
Smith59416
Montgomery54923
Yalobusha54514
Claiborne53716
Tunica53517
Lawrence51814
Perry49423
Carroll49312
Greene47818
Stone47514
Humphreys43816
Amite42513
Quitman4206
Jefferson Davis41011
Webster37613
Benton3416
Wilkinson33820
Kemper32615
Sharkey28514
Jefferson27610
Franklin2423
Choctaw2086
Issaquena1074
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 155915

Reported Deaths: 2674
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Jefferson23129377
Mobile16849315
Tuscaloosa10296140
Montgomery10197197
Madison928096
Shelby733863
Baldwin663769
Lee653465
Calhoun456761
Marshall438150
Etowah426551
Houston414834
Morgan412035
DeKalb338829
Elmore320053
St. Clair292542
Limestone284230
Walker277292
Talladega265335
Cullman244024
Lauderdale226242
Jackson214915
Franklin205231
Autauga204831
Colbert200532
Russell19443
Blount192525
Chilton186932
Dallas186527
Coffee176311
Dale175151
Covington174029
Escambia172530
Chambers135044
Clarke134317
Pike133513
Tallapoosa131787
Marion107629
Barbour10319
Marengo100822
Butler100740
Winston92213
Geneva9007
Lawrence85032
Pickens84718
Bibb82814
Randolph82316
Hale76730
Washington74412
Clay74112
Cherokee73314
Lowndes70928
Henry7086
Bullock64817
Monroe64610
Crenshaw60630
Perry5896
Fayette57413
Wilcox56712
Conecuh56113
Cleburne5568
Macon53420
Lamar4905
Sumter47221
Choctaw39012
Greene34216
Coosa2033
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