Ted Cruz: No U.S. Officials Should Attend Fidel Castro Funeral

The Texas senator and former GOP presidential candidate weighs in on the death of Fidel Castro and Trump's transition to the White House.
9:52 | 11/27/16

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Transcript for Ted Cruz: No U.S. Officials Should Attend Fidel Castro Funeral
And for more now let's turn to Republican senator and former presidential candidate Ted Cruz of Texas. Senator cruise you heard Tom talked about his family you have Cuban heritage as well from your dad's side of the family. What was his reaction. Look that this is a powerful moment for for people all across the country and and and especially for Cuban Americans. I was with my dad. When he found out the news that Fidel Castro was Stanton and and he simply said praise god. He you know for so many of us whose families have been imprisoned have been had been tortured had to have seen the destruction of Cuba. The that Fidel Castro carried out. My mind that as a teenager what was imprisoned and tortured by Batiste he was he was beaten in a prison cell had its teeth not kicked out of his mouth. My aunt my TS Sonia who whom I adore. She she filed a counter revolution against Castro and and and she and her two best friends in high school. What were thrown in prison and tortured at this teenage girls and and what they did two girls in Cuban prisons was was unspeakable. And and you know I first heard that did that that that Castro had had passed a final judgment. With a text from my cousin Beebe has my tears on his daughter who just said that she got to collar mom. And tell her mom Fidel is dead and end. For a man who was tortured and murdered and oppressed for so many city it is thankful that that that that he is no longer with us. So many powerful stories like that you know you put out a statement paying tribute to Castro's victims those who tried against him do you think his death. Well open a new chapter with increasing liberty for Cubans what what happens next. Well look that is certainly my hope and and and my prayer unfortunately the policies of the Obama administration. They have made that less likely what what the Obama administration has done his strengths and Raul Castro Raoul. He is the dictator now you know I asked my dad at dinner last night will what do you think happens now that Fidel is dead. And and he shrugged and said rattles been in charge for years that this is the system has gotten stronger. And what Obama has done is funneled billions of dollars to Raul Castro which is being used. To oppress dissidents you know in 2015. Roughly 101000. Political arrests occurred in Cuba that is five times as many as occurred in 2010 when they're only about 2000. This. Tyrannical regime has gotten stronger. Because of a weak president weak foreign policy and and it is very much my hope and belief. That with a new president coming in office in January president trump a new administration. That the that US foreign policy not just Cuba but towards our enemies whether they are Iran or North Korea. Will no longer be a policy of weakness and appeasement but instead using US strength to force and and press for change. But but I look for the day I've never been to Cuba I've never been to the land where my father was born where he grew up. I look forward to coming to Cuba but seeing a free Cuba where people can live. Where it's pulled out of so you are so loyally working I'm forgot do you think the embargo was working do you wanna double down on that. You know what I will say is the economic pressure was having real affect Cuba was a client state of the Soviet union for many many years when the Soviets collapsed. It put enormous economic pressure on Cuba but then Venezuela step can. And provided Petro dollars in in exchange. Full work for troops when Venezuela's economy was crater ring. President Obama stepped in with billions and and is propping up the administration. This ought to be a moment. Well what we're work Cubans are dancing in the street because they're being liberated but instead. Listen if you dance in the street. You're going to be thrown in jail Cuba is not a free society deal would 2015. To some 2000. Churches in Cuba where declared illegal a hundred were destroyed by the government you don't have the freedom to worship god to speak. And it is my hope that we will see US strength prompting real change in real freedom in Cuba. Let let's let's turn to to president elect trump. You met with him last week can trump tower you said you want to work with the new president in whatever capacity. You can have the greatest impact. What capacity might that be. Well listen we got a lot of work to do. This election was a mandate for change it astonished everyone and astonish the pundits of astonish the pollsters. And it was an overwhelming mandate it was over 300 electoral votes it was winning all across the midwest states that had gone democratic for years after years after years. States like Pennsylvania and Michigan and Iowa and Wisconsin. We have a mandate for change. And and Republicans have been given them the opportunity. We did get given control of the White House and every executive branch and both houses of congress we can't blow it. We have got to deliver and and so I'm excited about working with president elect trump working with the new administration. To actually deliver on the promises we've made to repeal obamacare to lift the burdens on small businesses to unleash. Energy what you have important senator firm strong principled conservative Supreme Court justice. Since his election mr. trump has changed his tune on some of those issues he said he wants to keep certain provisions of Obama care instead of repealing and replacing the whole law. That mankind may be causing climate change and he's open to abiding by the Paris a court. And that same section sex marriage is settled law that he would not try to have the Supreme Court overturned. Do those changes. In his tone concern you. But listen what I'm gonna work to do every day this is to try to work closely with the new president with the new administration and with my colleagues in congress. To deliver on what we promised Mike I gotta say if we don't. He if we're given the White House and both houses of congress and we don't deliver I think they'll be pitchforks and and tortures in the streets and and I think quite rightly I think. People are so fed up with Washington. This election was a mandate with chain to the most catastrophic thing Republicans could do. Is bill back to business as usual so you have a lot of real concern about what he's a new ten ounces bringing together. At listen the new team that trumpeted bringing together. Is an impressive serious team Jeff Sessions as attorney general I know Jeff I've worked closely with Jeff. In the senate Jeff is a Smart principled serious conservative ideas and make an excellent attorney general. You look at the national security team that's coming around. The trumpet administration it is a strong serious national security team so I'm encouraged by the team that is coming together by where their focus is. I'm encouraged by their planned for the first hundred days to act. Aggressively. Lifting the burdens on small businesses and job creators that's what the president should be doing and for my hand. I want to do everything I can to help president trump. Have an incredibly successful administration because if we deliver on the promises that that's how we actually turn the country around. Bring back jobs and raise wages for people or her. I also want to just go back a little bit back back to the campaign which at times was very bitter you had some very strong words. About then candidate trump listen to this. This man is a pathological. He doesn't know the difference between truth and lies he lies. Practically every word. The man is utterly amoral get morality does not exist. Do you regret regret any of those words. Well listen it was a hard fought campaign was hard fought on on all sides. And and and it was vigorous till the end but but at the end of the day the people of spoke and he won the election in won the nomination. He won the general election and convincing manner. And and my focuses on the country my focus is we have a new president. We have a mandate. We ought to deliver on that mandate we ought to deliver. This election was about jobs it was about the fact that for the last eight years. Working men and women this country have seen their lives they've seen wages stagnate instinct factories closing. We needed administration that fights every day for the working men and women of this country. That's my number one priority in the senate fighting for 27 million Texans. For jobs for economic growth to rate I just want to go back to those words he lies practically every word that comes out of his mouth. Do you still think Donald Trump is a liar. You know I'm not gonna re litigate the past I'm that a focus on the future I'm gonna focus on what's in front of us. And on fixing the problems we have I will say one thing Martha's going to be uninteresting test just in the next few days. I very much hope. That we don't see any US government officials. Going to Fidel Castro's funeral I hope we don't see Barack Obama and Jill Biden and Hillary Clinton and Democrats lining up to lionized. A murderous tyrant and fun. If you wouldn't go. To Paul Potts funeral or Stalin's funeral or Mao's funeral because they were murdering Communists dictators. Then you shouldn't be doing what Barack Obama. And Justin Trudeau are doing which is celebrating Fidel Castro a murderous. Communist dictator. Thanks so much for joining us senator Chris great seeing you thank you Martha god bless.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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