AMES, Iowa — Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Tex.) said Saturday that he thinks the mainstream media are "in love" with former secretary of state Hillary Clinton, but declined to say whether he backs the Republican National's Committee's threat to exclude NBC and CNN from the 2016 GOP primary debates if they don't pull the plug on plans to produce films about her.
"I don't think anybody is surprised to discover that the mainstream media are in love with Hillary Clinton. And indeed I would expect both of those movies to be released on Valentine's Day," Cruz told reporters.
RNC Chairman Reince Priebus is pressing for CNN and NBC to abandon plans to produce films about Clinton, given her status as a potential 2016 presidential candidate. CNN plans to produce a documentary, while NBC is producing a miniseries. If they don't comply, Priebus says, then he will move ahead with plans to exclude them from the slate of RNC-approved debates.
Cruz was asked whether he backed the RNC's position, but declined to say whether or not he does.
"The RNC will make its own decisions," he said.
Cruz was here to speak at a summit hosted by the Family Leader, a evangelical conservative group. He brought the crowd to its feet with a speech about the importance of encouraging growth and derailing Obamacare. Before that, Cruz's father, pastor Rafael Cruz, won loud applause for a speech about his decision to leave Cuba for the U.S.
Cruz has endorsed an effort to defund Obamacare by blocking any continuing resolution or budget bills that spend even a cent on President Obama's signature health-care law. But some Republicans in Congress have panned the idea.
Cruz was here on his second trip to the first-in-the-nation caucus state in as many months. When asked if he is planning to run for president, Cruz pivoted back to his fight against Obamacare.
"I am traveling the country, working to build a grass-roots army. And the biggest fight facing Congress right now is the fight to defund Obamacare," Cruz said.