Glenn Questions Ted Cruz on What It Means to 'Vote Your Conscience'

Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) defended his decision to vote for Donald Trump in the upcoming presidential election on The Glenn Beck Program Monday. Many in Glenn's audience supported and campaigned for Senator Cruz during the primary election, and Glenn felt it important for his audience to hear the senator's reasoning.

RELATED: Trump’s Third Act Enters Climax With Cruz

In a considerably heated interview, Glenn grilled Cruz to understand what pivot point led to the senator's decision, announced Friday on his Facebook page.

"I just want to make sure I understand," Glenn said. "So, a man who has principles, who says, There are lines I will not cross, it's still a binary choice? So, a man who you cannot come on and say, Yes, Glenn, he is fit to be president of the United States, I still am encouraged by you to abandon my principles and vote because it's a binary choice?"

Cruz answered deliberately.

"You are encouraged by me to do what you believe is right and honorable and principled," Cruz said. "And from my perspective, as I look at the issues, Hillary Clinton is telling us she will do enormous damage to the country."

Read below or listen to the full segment for answers to these pointed questions:

• What was the pivot point that changed Senator Cruz's mind?

• Will Senator Cruz be voting his conscience with Trump?

• Did the senator reframe his speech from Cleveland?

• Is this election really a binary choice?

• Did Senator Cruz hang Mike Lee out to dry?

• Did Senator Cruz "rent" his email list to Donald Trump?

Listen to this segment from The Glenn Beck Program:

Below is a rush transcript of this segment, it might contain errors:

GLENN: Yes. Well, waiting for the politician hotline to ring right now. On the other end, Senator Ted Cruz, who agreed on Friday to come on the show and talk to you and tell you his thoughts.

PAT: What if there's a super important Senate vote going on like this minute?

GLENN: Here he is. There he is. We get to him right now. Okay. Good.

(music)

GLENN: Welcome to the program, Senator Ted Cruz.

TED: Glenn, it's good to be with you.

GLENN: Senator, you -- you said you made this decision for two reasons: First, you promised to support the Republican nominee, and you intend to keep your word. And second, by any measure, Hillary Clinton is wholly unacceptable. I want to get into both of those with you, but I want to start with the last thing that you said.

TED: Sure.

GLENN: You said, "If you don't want to see Hillary Clinton presidency, I encourage you to vote for Donald Trump." You are voting for him. And you encourage others to vote for him.

In your very eloquent, almost Charles Sumner speech at the convention, you said, "Vote for conscience." So am I supposed to now vote for him, or am I supposed to vote for my conscience?

TED: Well, Glenn, what I said in Cleveland and what I would say today is the same thing: You should follow your conscience. And I believe what I laid out in Cleveland was, "Don't stay home. Come out and vote. Vote your conscience and vote for candidates you trust to defend freedom and the Constitution." And what I was trying to do at Cleveland was lay out a path to uniting Republicans and lay out a path to winning.

And in particular, I was saying to the Trump campaign, "This is how you earn my vote and I believe how you earn the vote of other conservatives: You defend freedom and defend the Constitution. This is about principles and ideas." That's the test I'm applying. What I do know is that Hillary Clinton fails that test profoundly. And I said that at Cleveland, and I think it is even more clear today.

GLENN: Yeah, we've known that. We've known that for 25 years.

TED: Yes.

GLENN: And Hillary Clinton has done nothing to change your mind or mine that she is fit to be president of the United States.

However, this weekend, you wouldn't answer the question if Donald Trump is fit to be president of the United States.

TED: What I said is this is a binary choice. I wish it were not a binary choice. As you know, I tried very, very hard -- as did you -- to prevent it from being a binary choice from Hillary and Donald Trump. And I think it is fair to say there was no other Republican candidate who left more on the field and did more to stop Donald from being the nominee than I did. But the voters made a different decision. And you have to respect the democratic process, even if you may not be terribly happy with the outcome.

And given the binary choice on any measure --

GLENN: I just want to make sure I understand. So a man who has principles, who says, "I will -- there are lines I will not cross." It's still a binary choice. So a man who you cannot come on and say, "Yes, Glenn, he is fit to be president of the United States," I still am encouraged by you to abandon my principles and vote because it's a binary choice?

TED: You are encouraged by me to do what you believe is right and honorable and principled. And from my perspective, as I look at the issues, Hillary Clinton is telling us she will do enormous damage to the country.

Let's take the issue of the Supreme Court, which, as you know, is an issue that matters deeply to me. I know it matters deeply to you and deeply to many of your listeners.

Almost every one of our constitutional rights hangs in the balance. We have a narrowly divided court, with Justice Scalia's passing. Just about every right we cherish is at risk of being lost, whether it is the Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms. And in the Heller case, which I helped win, that was a 5-4 victory that upheld the individual right to keep and bear arms.

The next president, probably in January, will nominate a justice that will either uphold the individual right to keep and bear arms or attempt to revoke it forever.

GLENN: So you and I agree on this 100 percent.

TED: Yep.

GLENN: But this is information that you had in Cleveland. And hang on just a second. Before you respond.

TED: Sure.

GLENN: You had all of this information. You had this information the day you dropped out of the race and said that Donald Trump is a sociopathic liar. So you had all this information. Have you spent an enormous amount of time with Donald Trump? Do you have new information that has made you say, "Oh, my gosh, he's now not a sociopathic liar. He is not the guy that I -- I -- I very eloquently spelled out for over a year and now suddenly there's a reason to believe him."

TED: Well, let me say a couple of things in response, Glenn.

First of all, I have had many significant disagreements with Donald Trump. And as you noted, I have not been shy to articulate those at considerable length.

I don't intend to do so at this point. The primary is over. We are in a general election with a -- with a binary choice.

GLENN: I'm asking you for new information.

TED: And I don't think it's beneficial for me to continue laying out those concerns. I have laid them out a great length --

GLENN: No, I'm asking you for new information.

TED: You're in a different role than I am. You have -- you can share your concerns. I have shared them in the past. I don't intend to repeat them.

STU: But that's different.

GLENN: That's different. I'm asking you for new information. You knew all the things that you are saying today. The time to do that would have been the day that you pulled out or the day that you -- the day that you gave the speech so eloquently.

PAT: Why now?

GLENN: Why now? What's new?

TED: Well, a number of things have changed. I'd say the most significant thing that changed was on Friday, the day that I announced that I would vote for Donald Trump, the Trump campaign put out a list of potential Supreme Court nominees, and I think to me, critically committed that the only nominees he would consider for the court were on that list.

Now, that was a major shift. In the past, he had put out a list of 11 potential nominees, and the campaign's language had been, "These are among the people who would be considered." On Friday, the campaign expanded that list to 21. It's a very strong list. They put Senator Mike Lee, who would make an extraordinary Supreme Court justice. They put him at the top of that list.

GLENN: Yeah, after not speaking to him.

TED: And for the first time ever, the campaign committed, those were the only names that would be considered.

Now, I'll tell you, Glenn, that was not an accident, that that occurred. When several weeks ago, when I sat down with Mike Pence in Washington, Mike asked me, "What would it take to get you on board?" And for months, I had been telling Donald, I had been telling the campaign, "My greatest concern was protecting the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, and the rule of law."

I told Donald that before the convention. I said that over and over and over again. And when we talked about, "Well, what could the campaign do to give any degree of reassurance on the Constitution and the rule of law," we discussed the Supreme Court as being one of the great checks protecting the Constitution and the rule of law. And the Trump campaign committing to nominate from that list was an important change that gave me significant reassurance and helped me get to the point of saying yes.

PAT: Hmm.

STU: So, A, I have a million questions on that. Why do you believe him, number one?

Number two, you have Mike Lee, who I agree would be a great Supreme Court justice, but also is on the list and still not endorsing. And did you tell Lee in advance? Because there's lots of reports saying that you basically hung him out to dry after he's been siding with you this entire time.

(chuckling)

TED: Well, look, on the latter point, Mike and I have had a great many conversations. And the idea that -- I would love to see Mike Lee on the Supreme Court, as I said many times on the campaign trail. I joked more than once with Mike there, and indeed, Glenn, with you there, about how good I thought Mike would look in a black robe. So I will make no secret and no apologies of my view that Mike Lee would make an extraordinary Supreme Court justice.

PAT: No question.

GLENN: We've talked about that extensively, you're exactly right.

But I believe Stu's exact question was, "Did you hang him out to dry?" He was not aware -- many reports are that he was not aware that he was a candidate or you were going to make this decision on Friday.

TED: I'm not going to get into the details of our private conversations, but let me just say, that's not accurate. But I don't want to get into the details of our private conversations.

STU: Okay. So why do you believe Trump on this list? Because, I mean, you've called -- I mean, you said, you know, he was going to send us into the abyss. You called him, correctly, a pathological liar. Why would you believe that he put it down on a piece of paper, that he wouldn't back off on it? I mean, he's backing off on -- he backed off of the birther thing. It was the only thing we knew about the guy.

TED: What I laid out -- and let me encourage your listeners. You know, I mean, I wrote a long op-ed that we posted on Facebook. We sent out on email.

If you haven't read it, I'd encourage you to read it. Because it was something that I wrote from the heart. This was a decision that I agonized about.

But starting on the Supreme Court, what I believe to a certainty is Hillary Clinton, if she were president would appoint left-wing ideologues to the Court. If that happens -- the next president is going to get one, two, three -- maybe even four Supreme Court justices. If that happens, the Second Amendment is gone. Religious liberty is gone. Free speech is gone. Federalism is gone. US sovereignty will be given away. I believe that to 100 percent certainty.

Now, with respect to the justices Donald Trump would nominate, I know that he is publicly committing to nominate from a list that is very strong. And if he were to nominate from that list, it would be a major step towards protecting our rights. I hope that he would follow through on that commitment. One never knows if one will. But the fact that he is publicly promising, "I will nominate from these 21," I think creates a dynamic where, compared to Hillary, who is promising to put left-wing ideologues, that's a clear choice.

PAT: Ted, I think what's most disappointing to me is that for you, this has gone apparently from voting your conscience, to, this is a binary choice. Those are two different things: Voting my conscience means I can't vote for either one of these people. That's what that means to me.

What does vote your conscience mean to you?

TED: Still, with all respect, I don't agree with that. And one of the dynamics, if you go and look at what I said in Cleveland --

GLENN: We will.

TED: What I said in Cleveland was almost word-for-word what Ronald Reagan said about Gerald Ford in '76. And it was almost word-for-word what Ted Kennedy said about Jimmy Carter in 1980. And that was not accidental. Both of those were obvious historical analogues. Those were the two previous candidates who had come very close and nearly won the nomination. And my speech drew deliberately from both of those speeches. Both of those speeches at the time were treated as effectively endorsement speeches.

One of the unfortunate things about the reaction in Cleveland is that for many who were watching, it was perceived that I was essentially embracing Never Trump. I have never been a Never Trumper. You know, Glenn, you and I have talked about this. You have defended the position, I believe at times, of never supporting Trump. That's never been my position. I've never said it.

GLENN: And never supporting Hillary.

TED: Right.

GLENN: In fact, sir, I never actually endorsed you. Every single one of my speeches started the same way: I am not here to endorse Ted Cruz. I am here to endorse the ideas of America and the Constitution of the United States of America.

So I don't -- I don't -- I'm not never or always anything, except for constitutional principles.

TED: And you're preaching to the choir on that. But my point is, in Cleveland, I was not articulating, "Do not vote for Trump." I was articulating, "If you want my vote, defend freedom and defend the Constitution."

GLENN: Correct.

TED: What I was hoping to do was provide a path for the Republican nominee to focus on the issues that matter and bring us together. And I believe in putting out a list of Supreme Court justices and committing to that list, that was a major step in that direction.

I also think it was important last week when -- when I had been leading the fight in the United States Senate to protect freedom on the internet, to protect -- prevent Obama from giving away control of the internet to Russia and China and Iran. Hillary Clinton supports Obama in doing that. And Donald Trump came out strongly in support of my fight to protect the internet. That was significant.

The test I laid out in Cleveland was, "Will you defend freedom and defend the Constitution?" When Donald Trump comes in and supports our efforts to defend freedom, that's significant. Does it mean that he'll always do that in the future? No, I don't have certainty of any candidate on that.

But what I do know is that what Hillary is promising to do would do enormous damage. The court would be lost for a generation. And, you know, on the question of voting your conscience, listen, that is what I have struggled for months, prayerfully considering, "What is the right thing to do?" Any voter has five choices: You can vote for Hillary Clinton. You can vote for Donald Trump. You can vote third party. You can write somebody in. Or you can not vote in the presidential election.

I decided early on, I was Never Hillary. I was not and will never vote for Hillary Clinton. Part of what I thought about and wrestled about over the past several months is the last three options. I could not publicly defend -- I couldn't sit here on your radio show and urge voters to vote third party when a third party's not going to win and either Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump is going to be president. I couldn't urge someone to write someone in or not to vote. And so I was left with --

GLENN: I hate to interrupt you.

TED: My conscience left me as the only option, if I want to stop a Hillary Clinton presidency, is to vote for Trump. And that's ultimately what I concluded.

GLENN: I just have -- I have one more question, and this is worth $20,000 to me. Bump the next commercial, please. Take that first commercial. Give me the extra minute for his response because I'm up against a network break.

All of us have received pro-Trump emails, and we're now on the Trump bandwagon. I have taken advertising from Donald Trump. And I would take advertising from Hillary Clinton because this is a business and I don't believe keeping options gone.

However, I think everybody should be able to have their voice heard on the public airwaves. However, me getting information or email list now on Donald Trump is really rather annoying. The only person that I ever gave my information to was you.

As a candidate, you do not have to sell your list. Did you sell your list to Donald Trump?

TED: Well, Glenn, as you noted on your radio show, you sell advertising. It's actually what funds your radio show. And that's true of, as far as any radio show, that's how one communicates. That's also true of every candidate. You don't sell your list, but you rent your list. So if someone wants to access your supporters, they pay for it. And that helps fund your efforts. And so like every other candidate, sure, we have rented our list out for those who wish to pay for it. That is true, by the way, of every other candidate.

And so, yeah, there's a hit piece today in Politico, a left-wing rag that wants to -- that is hitting me --

GLENN: Oh, my gosh.

TED: -- but somehow is not applying that standard to anyone else in the political world or for that matter anyone else on radio who sells advertising every day to fund communicating with the voters.

GLENN: Well, I do have that same standard. Thank you very much. Ted, I disagree with you. I disagree with you strongly, but I still respect you as a man. And you have done a lot of great. And I hope you continue to do a lot of great work in the future. Thank you for coming on the program.

TED: Well, Glenn, and you are my friend. I continue to respect you --

GLENN: I have to break. Thank you. I'm sorry, I have to break for this network. Here we go.

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Soros is trying to elect MORE TEXAS RINOs. Here's how YOU can stop him.

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Texas is under threat of a George Soros-backed takeover.

Soros-funded RINO judges have been elected in some of the highest courts in Texas. These judges implemented restrictions that have blocked nearly a thousand cases of voter fraud from being investigated or prosecuted from across the state. These new restrictions are similar to ones in place in states like George, Arizona, and Wisconsin, leaving Texas more susceptible to election corruption than ever. If Texas falls to corruption, America will lose its largest bastion of conservative electoral power in the nation. Without Texas, Republicans WILL NOT be able to win national elections and liberal corruption will go unchecked across the country.

Fortunately, there is a way to stop this: YOU.

If you live in Texas you have a chance to stand up against corruption and to fight back! Starting Tuesday, February 20th, early voting for the primaries begins, where three of these judges are up for election. Go out and vote. If the right people are voted in, there's a good chance the restrictions will be lifted and election fraud can once again be prosecuted.

But remember, you can't just go in and vote for anyone who has an "R" next to their name. Sorors knows that a registered Democrat would never stand a chance in Texas, so his lackeys register as Republicans and ride the little "R" right into office. So who do you vote for?

Fortunately, Glenn had Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton on his show today and Ken gave us his list of judges that he vouches for. His list is as follows:

  • Gina Parker
  • Lee Finley
  • David Schenck
The Primary Election runs from February 20th to March 5th. This is your chance to get out there and make a difference. It might be the most important election you ever participate in. If you need to know where your nearest polling location is, or any other information regarding the election, you can go to votetexas.gov to find out more.
It's time to stand up.

Hypocrisy EXPOSED: The 'Amazon Files' and what WE are doing about it

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Who is really banning books?

For years now, Conservatives have been taking flak from the left for supposed "book bans." The left likes to compare these "bans" to Nazi book burnings, accusing the right of sweeping authoritarian decrees designed to suppress information. In reality, this is a movement largely motivated by parents, who want to remove inappropriate books from children's libraries.

But if you want to discuss authoritarian book bans, look no further than the White House. As Glenn recently covered, the Biden administration has been pressuring the world's largest bookseller, Amazon, into suppressing books they disagree with.

On February 5th, 2024, Ohio Representative Jim Jordan released a slew of subpoenaed documents that exposed pressure placed on Amazon by the Biden Administration. The documents, which Jordan dubbed "The Amazon Files" after Elon Musk's "The Twitter Files," revealed an email conversation between Andrew Slavitt, a former White House senior adviser, and Amazon employees. In these emails, Slavitt complained that the top search results for books on "vaccines" were "concerning" and then requested that Amazon intervene. Amazon initially refused, not out of some altruistic concern for the free exchange of information. They thought any action taken would be "too visible" and would further exasperate the “Harry/Sally narrative,” referring to the outrage that followed Amazon's removal of Ryan T. Anderson’s book When Harry Became Sally.

Despite this initial refusal, Amazon agreed to meet with the White House a few days later. The number one item on their agenda was removing books from the website. An Amazon employee even admitted that the reason they even took this meeting was due to the pressure being placed on them by the Biden Administration.

What was the result of this meeting? Amazon caved. They began to implement ways of limiting the outreach of books that challenged the mainstream vaccine narrative and other books the White House might not like.

The White House was caught red-handed pressuring the world's largest bookseller to restrict the sale of books they consider in opposition to their narrative, and they have the gall to accuse conservatives of information suppression. This is just ONE of many actions committed by the Biden Administration that are more characteristic of a dictator than a president.

What can you do about it? Fortunately, you are not dependent on Amazon and its corrupted algorithm to help you find books. Every week right here on GlennBeck.com, we highlight books that Glenn is reading or talking about in our "Glenn's Bookshelf" series. Here you can find a wide selection of books free from Amazon's filters. Be sure to sign up for Glenn's newsletter to find out about new additions to "Glenn's Bookshelf" every week.

10 times Biden has acted like a DICTATOR

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The left-wing media's most recent tirade is accusing Trump of being a dictator. But, as Glenn said, "Everything they're accusing us of, they're doing."

Since day one, the Biden administration has overstepped the bounds placed on the executive branch set by the Constitution. In Glenn's most recent TV Special, he examined ten times Biden acted like a dictator, NOT a president. Here are 10 of Biden's Dictator Moves, and click HERE to get ALL of the research that went into this week's Glenn TV special:

5 ways to protect your First Amendment rights. Number 4 will surprise you.

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Every day it seems Glenn covers another story revealing how people across the world at all levels of power DESPISE the fact that YOU have rights, and they are actively trying to curtail them. Recently, there has been a string of attacks against the rights outlined in the First Amendment: the freedom of religion, the freedom of speech, the freedom of press, the freedom of assembly, and the freedom to petition.

As a refresher, the First Amendment reads as follows:

"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances."

This is powerful stuff, there is a good reason the Founding Fathers made it the FIRST Amendment. It's also the reason why power-hungry elites are attacking it. These attacks are designed to control the way you think, speak, and believe, vote, what you read, and who holds your representatives responsible. The First Amendment is our strongest weapon against tyrants, and they know it.

So what can you do about it? Hope that some wig in Washinton will eventually do something? We know how well that works. The best thing to do is to stay active, engage in the issues you care about, and exercise your rights.

So where to start? Here are a few things YOU can do to protect your First Amendment rights:

Religion

The best way to flex your Freedom of Religion is to—you guessed it—practice your faith. Become an active member in your place of worship, go to scripture studies, invite your friends to that late afternoon event, and walk the life. This can impact the way you spend money as well. Shop the businesses and brands that share your values, and don't shop at the ones that scorn them. Keeping the community alive and healthy is the best way to ensure that generations to come will be able to experience the freedom you enjoy.

Speech

Much like religion, the best way to protect your freedom of speech is... to speak. Engage your friends and family in polite, civil conversation. Stand up for what you believe in, and make your case to your peers. Just remember to keep it friendly. No one ever won an argument by shouting down their opponent. The civil exchange of ideas is the cornerstone of our republic, and a dialogue where the participants are well-informed, considerate, compassionate, and open-minded can have permanent impacts on all involved.

Press

Freedom of the Press seems a little tricky at first. Unless you work for the media, what are you supposed to do? Quit your job and go work for the local newspaper? The good news is that exercising this right is not nearly that difficult. In fact, you are currently doing it. The best thing you can do is to read from outlets that produce informative content. Want to know what Glenn consumes to stay informed every day? Sign up for Glenn's Morning Brief newsletter to get all the stories Glenn gets sent to his desk every day sent straight to your inbox.

Assembly

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Freedom of assembly is one of the more impactful yet underutilized freedoms in the First Amendment. Peaceably assembling and protesting with like-minded individuals can hugely influence politicians and policies while simultaneously creating community and fellowship between attendees. It's understandable why more people don't turn out. We're all busy people with busy schedules, and flying out to D.C. for the weekend seems like a daunting task to many. Thankfully, you don't have to go out all the way to D.C. to make a difference. Gather some like-minded people in your town and bring awareness to issues that impact your community. Big change starts locally, and exercising your freedom to assemble can be the catalyst to lasting impact.

Petition

If you've been a long-time listener of Glenn, then you will have heard a few of his calls to action where he asks his audience to contact their representatives about a particular piece of policy. There is a good reason Glenn keeps on doing those: they work. Whether it's your local mayor or your senator, a call and an email go a long way. If you really want to make a change, convince your friends and family to reach out as well.