The Dallas Morning News reports:
Sen. Ted Cruz’s latest effort to inflame conservatives — a video in which Rep. Beto O’Rourke appears to express enthusiasm for flag burning — hinges on heavy splicing and a creative interpretation of a long-winded comment.
O’Rourke did not say he’s “grateful” for flag burning. Nor did he say that flag burning is “inherently American.” But that’s how the Cruz campaign portrays O’Rourke’s remarks from an El Paso town hall on Friday, in a 25-second video posted on the senator’s campaign page and shared through social media.
In context, it’s clear that was what O’Rourke was defending — the peaceful protest of football players seeking to call attention to police brutality by taking a knee during the national anthem. Video of him making that case went viral two weeks ago.
The Hill reports:
A transcript of the event obtained by The Hill shows the Cruz campaign edited significant context from O’Rourke’s answer. O’Rourke, according to the transcript, said it is “inherently American” to “nonviolently and peacefully protest” police brutality and racial inequality.
O’Rourke’s communications director, Chris Evans, told The Hill that O’Rourke was not discussing “anything about flag-burning or desecrating the flag in his answer.” The Cruz ad uses 43 of 143 words from the constituent’s question and 24 of 615 words from O’Rourke’s answer.
The original video is below.