Ted Cruz Debates Trump Supporters as They Shout at Him in Indiana

“I’m running to be everyone’s president,” Cruz told the protesters.

Cruz was finishing up a campaign stop at a restaurant alongside a river in a small town northeast of Indianapolis when he heard half a dozen men chanting “Lyin’ Ted” and other slogans across the street.

The Texas senator made his way toward the men surrounded by a swarm of his supporters and members of the media, then debated the men, one of whom told him, “We don’t want you.”

“I’m running to be everyone’s president,” Cruz told the men. “Those who vote for me and even those who don’t.”

“I will tell you this, sir,” Cruz said, “America is a better country --”

“Without you,” one of the protesters interrupted.

“Thank you for those kind sentiments,” Cruz replied. “Let me point out, I have treated you respectfully the entire time. And a question that everyone here should ask --”

“Are you Canadian?” another protester cut him off.

“Civilized people don’t just scream and yell,” Cruz said. “I’m not yelling at you.”

Cruz, whose path to the nomination will grow much more difficult if he fails to stop Trump from winning in Indiana on Tuesday, compared the way he spoke with the protesters and the way the billionaire businessman has handled dissent. Trump said in February that he wanted to punch a protester in the face, and he has said previously that he would pay the legal bills of his supporters who fight protesters. (He later walked back on that.)

“If I were Donald Trump, I wouldn’t have come over and talked to you,” Cruz said. “I wouldn’t have shown you that respect.”