Video: Ted Cruz was confronted after NRA conference by ex-House candidate at Houston restaurant: '19 children died! That's on your hands!'

Senator Ted Cruz was confronted with a former gun control congressional candidate during a dinner at a Houston restaurant. Courtesy of Benjamin Hernandez.
Senator Ted Cruz was confronted at a Houston restaurant after an appearance at the NRA conference.
A former House candidate is seen on video yelling at Cruz, "Why did you speak tonight?"
Several Texas Republicans dropped out of the NRA conference, including Gov. Greg Abbott and Senator John Cornyn.
A video shows Senator Ted Cruz of Texas being confronted at a restaurant after his appearance at the National Rifle Association Convention in Houston.
The tense exchange came days after an 18-year-old gunman killed 19 schoolchildren and two teachers at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas on Tuesday.
"Why did you speak tonight? Why did you come here to Congress for blood money? Why when 19 children died? 19 children died! The video shows Benjamin Hernandez yelling at Cruz, who waved while Hernandez was dragged away by security.
Hernandez, an independent, ran for Congress in 2018 to represent TX-09, which includes parts of Houston.
A longer video was posted by Indivisible Houston, a political advocacy group of which Hernandez is a board member. The video shows the beginning of the exchange, with Cruz posing for a photo with Hernandez before the latter began questioning why Cruz refuses to support stricter gun control laws including background checks.
At one point, Hernandez said the Uvalde shooter "waited until he was 18" to purchase multiple firearms. Authorities have confirmed that the gunman bought two assault weapons after his 18th birthday on May 16.
Cruz replied, "But the background checks wouldn't have stopped the shooter." Cruz has opposed almost every gun control measure proposed in Congress, calling instead for armed officers in schools.
At various points in the video, Cruz said to Hernandez, "Okay, you don't want to listen to me" and "You don't know what you're talking about."
Hernandez told Insider that he was eating at the restaurant when he saw Cruz walk in. He asked Cruz if he would pose for a photo after the senator finished his dinner, and the senator immediately stood up.
"As a voter, you know, he refuses to allow us to engage him in public forums. So that's one of the ways we can approach him," Hernandez said. "I had never done anything like this before."
He added, "At that moment I'm like, 'I have to do this because there are people who are really suffering.' And if Ted Cruz has to do it, you know Ted Cruz is uncomfortable while he's having dinner , I mean, that's just the price of it."
The NRA's annual meeting, which began Friday, sparked protests in Houston. Cruz's performance at the convention was notable after several other top speakers -- including Gov. Greg Abbott, Sen. John Cornyn and Rep. Dan Crenshaw -- dropped out.
However, Abbott appeared virtually and went to Uvalde in person.
“The fact that Ted Cruz is still showing up for Congress, an organization that actively blocks legislation that can help end gun violence in this country. I mean, that's just amazing," said Hernandez, who was attending a protest.
The story goes on

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