Presidential candidate Sen. Ted Cruz said he has one issue in mind that presumed Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton has absolutely no way to refute. It’s not Benghazi or what information her emails contained. Cruz would ask Clinton about the state of the economy if he gets to meet her in a face-to-face debate.
“We’ve seen for two terms now the big government policies you and Barack Obama advocate don’t work. Why should anyone believe a third term of the same failed policies would produce anything different?” Cruz said in an interview with The Federalist.
Cruz said the facts are that Americans are struggling to make ends meet and have been suffering over the past eight years. He said the most affected are those Clinton is hoping will vote for her, namely young people, Hispanics, African-Americans and working moms.
“Over the last six-and-a-half years, the rich have gotten richer and hard-working men and women across America have seen their lives get harder and harder,” Cruz said while at a campaign stop in Nashville.
The numbers back up the Texas senator’s statements. According to U.S. Census data, the median household income for American families in 2008 was $52,029. Government data from 2011 shows the median household income was at $50,500 that year.
Financial experts said the real difference is in individual wages and that noteworthy information is in Social Security numbers because all wage earners pay into Social Security. Figures show 50 percent of workers in the United States earned either equal to or less than $26,965. Another 16 percent made between $26,965 and $41,212. That means 66 percent of Americans earn equal to or less than $41,212 a year.
The top 10 percent of American families are the only ones that saw substantial income growth in 2011, according to government numbers. At the other end of the spectrum, more than 47 million Americans are on food stamps. Experts said these extremes show how much the middle class has declined in recent years.
According to Market Watch, there hasn’t been any real improvement for wage earners over the past two years–and 2016 doesn’t look any brighter. A survey of 1,100 American companies indicates that 98 percent of employers surveyed are giving average pay hikes of 3 percent for non-management employees in 2016. That is the same as in 2015 and 2014.
“To a large extent, 3 percent pay raises have become the new norm in corporate America,” says Sandra McLellan, senior compensation consultant at Towers Watson, the global professional services company conducting the survey.
Cruz said he would expect Clinton would respond to his economy question with rhetoric about income inequality. However, he already has an answer to that.
“And then I hope to come right back at her with: I emphatically agree income inequality is a tremendously important problem. That’s why it is such a compelling indictment of your record that it’s increased dramatically under your policies,” Cruz said.
Cruz, a former college debate champion, said it would be unwise to travel down the road of scandals with Clinton. It would take too much time and wouldn’t win voters over to the Republican message, he said.
“And frankly, the key to winning in 2016 is running a populist campaign of hard-working men and women against the bipartisan corruption of Washington, which Hillary embodies,” Cruz said.
He hopes to change the narrative that the Democrats represent working people while Republicans are rich and out of sync with the majority of Americans. Cruz said that narrative could be easily accomplished in his campaign.
“My dad came to America with nothing, washing dishes, making 50 cents an hour. When I was in high school, my parents went bankrupt,” Cruz said. “Hillary and Bill Clinton have made hundreds of millions of dollars exploiting their government service.”
Cruz is enjoying a surge of support. His poll numbers went up to double digits after the first Republican presidential debate in Cleveland. His name was the most searched for name on the Internet during the event, according to analytics.
This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Equipping You With The Truth