Column: My first political rally

%22After+experiencing+%5BCruz%27s%5D+hospitality+firsthand+and+observing+his+recent+actions%2C+my+perspective+completely+transformed.+Not+only+do+I+view+Cruz+as+a+thought+leader+and+a+Constitutionalist%2C+but+I+also+view+him+as+an+individual+whose+compassionate+nature+embodies+the+rich+values+of+our+state+and+nation+as+a+whole.%22
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Column: My first political rally

"After experiencing [Cruz's] hospitality firsthand and observing his recent actions, my perspective completely transformed. Not only do I view Cruz as a thought leader and a Constitutionalist, but I also view him as an individual whose compassionate nature embodies the rich values of our state and nation as a whole."

Courtesy of Benjamin Nopper

"After experiencing [Cruz's] hospitality firsthand and observing his recent actions, my perspective completely transformed. Not only do I view Cruz as a thought leader and a Constitutionalist, but I also view him as an individual whose compassionate nature embodies the rich values of our state and nation as a whole."

Courtesy of Benjamin Nopper

Courtesy of Benjamin Nopper

"After experiencing [Cruz's] hospitality firsthand and observing his recent actions, my perspective completely transformed. Not only do I view Cruz as a thought leader and a Constitutionalist, but I also view him as an individual whose compassionate nature embodies the rich values of our state and nation as a whole."

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As hundreds of energized Ted Cruz supporters overflowed Noah’s Event Center, frantic attendees pushed their way toward the podium, hoping to catch a glimpse at the man who is hoping to retain his Senate seat.

Standing in the midst of the chaos of the overflow section, I began to feel frustrated by the mass of humanity that intimately surrounded me and obstructed my view.

I had seen the extravagant rally bus, I had seen the television cameras from CNN and ABC, and maybe I wasn’t going to see Ted Cruz after all. Maybe my friends were right that politics are just boring nonsense anyway.

But just as I was on the brink of giving up, an usher informed the crowd that a segment of standing room space had opened up. I rushed to grab a spot, and I suddenly found myself gazing at Cruz taking the stage and acknowledging the massive crowd.

Soaking up the moment, I listened to Cruz discuss the issues I have researched so much and often agree with him on (albeit I am not old enough to vote), including limited government, reduced taxes immigration, and most importantly, following the Constitution to its intrinsic values.

Every now and then, the crowd would erupt in collective chants such as “build the wall” or “Ted Cruz,” and the senator would continue to urge his supporters to understand the importance of their vote.

When Cruz eventually wrapped up and thanked his supporters, very few of them actually left the venue, including myself. That’s because Cruz, protected by a half dozen police officers, stood at the foot of the stage, shaking hands and taking photos with his supporters.

When Cruz ran for President in 2016, I always agreed with him on policy but had my doubts about his character. However, after experiencing his hospitality firsthand and observing his recent responses to criticism, my perspective completely transformed. Not only do I view Cruz as a thought leader and a Constitutionalist, but I also view him as an individual whose compassionate nature embodies the rich values of our state and nation as a whole.

After I answered a few questions about Cruz’s impact on my generation from a CNN reporter who approached me, I continued to reflect on the experience during the long wait in line to meet the senator. Two hours ago I was ready to quit, and now I had done an interview for CNN and was about to meet Ted Cruz.

When I finally shook his hand, all I could think of to say was, “Thank you, sir, you are an inspiration to me.”

Cruz looked me in the eye and said, “That really means a lot to me. God bless you.”

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