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Ted Cruz and Megyn Kelly tangle over immigration

Ted Cruz and Megyn Kelly tangled over immigration. (Yuri Gripas/Reuters)

This post has been updated

Fox News's Megyn Kelly -- whom Donald Trump has repeatedly attacked on Twitter this week -- tangled with a different presidential candidate over immigration Tuesday: Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Tex.). Kelly repeatedly pressed Cruz on a question that Trump was asked on the network Monday: If a husband and a wife were undocumented immigrants and had two children who were born in the United States and citizens, would you deport the citizen children?

Cruz did not answer the question, but instead launched into an explanation of how he thinks the immigration system should be changed, starting with finding areas of bipartisan agreement such as securing the border, and then streamlining legal immigration.

"But that doesn't sound like an answer," Kelly said. "Mr. Trump answered that question explicitly last night on 'The O'Reilly Factor.' Will you do so now?"

The "great, great wall" is just the beginning of Donald Trump's immigration plan. (Video: Gillian Brockell/The Washington Post)

Cruz would not and instead discussed how he thinks Congress should fix the immigration system.

"You've outlined your plan, but . . . you're dodging my question. You don't want to answer that question?" Kelly asked.

No, said Cruz, who both smiled and sounded irritated at points, adding: "But Megyn, I'm not playing that game."

Trump -- whose immigration plan Cruz has said falls into step with his own -- said that he would deport the children. Cruz would not say how he would handle the situation.

"Megyn, I get that's the question you want to ask. That's also the question every mainstream media liberal journalist wants to ask," Cruz said.

"Is it unfair?" Kelly asked.

"It's a distraction from how we actually solve the problem. You know it's also the question Barack Obama wants to focus on," Cruz said.

"But why is it so hard?" Kelly asked. "Why don't you just say yes or no?"

Cruz did not say yes or no. Instead he pivoted back to the idea that "we need to solve the problem" of illegal immigration. "Once we solve that problem, then we can have a debate. Then we can have a conversation."

Trump attacked Kelly after she aggressively questioned him during this month's Republican presidential debate over his history of offensive statements about women.

"She gets out and she starts asking me all sorts of ridiculous questions," Trump said in a CNN interview earlier this month. "You could see there was blood coming out of her eyes, blood coming out of her wherever. In my opinion, she was off base."

Trump again attacked Kelly on Twitter Monday and Tuesday, including saying she was "off her game" after coming back from vacation.

[Read: Donald Trump keeps bullying Megyn Kelly on Twitter, because Donald Trump]

Fox News Chairman and CEO Roger Ailes issued a statement Tuesday calling Trump's most recent attacks on Kelly "bullying" and said it is "as unacceptable as it is disturbing."

Ted Cruz exits the presidential race

Republican presidential candidate, Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, speaks with his wife, Heidi, by his side during a primary night campaign event, Tuesday, May 3, 2016, in Indianapolis. Cruz ended his presidential campaign, eliminating the biggest impediment to Donald Trump's march to the Republican nomination. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)
Businessman and Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump continues to defend himself after his controversial comments about Fox News anchor Megyn Kelly. (Video: Alice Li/The Washington Post)

Correction: An earlier version of this post had the word "liberal" missing from the following quote: "That's also the question every mainstream media liberal journalist wants to ask." The quote has been amended.