December 16, 2015
Fox News -- December 16, 2015
Cruz-Rubio feud flares as GOP candidates battle for tough-on-terror mantle
The rivalry between Sens. Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio flared Tuesday at the final Republican primary debate of the year, as all the leading GOP candidates battled to show their tough-on-terror credentials.
Donald Trump, as in past debates, sparred sharply with his rivals on stage over his controversial proposals, notably his call to ban Muslims from entering the country. But the changing dynamics in the race appeared to drive frequent clashes between the senators from Texas and Florida --- who are now battling to be the Trump alternative in the race as Ben Carson slides in the polls.
With the terror attacks in Paris and San Bernardino, Calif., refocusing the race squarely on security issues, Cruz from the outset tried to sound a tough message against radical Islam.
“We will utterly destroy ISIS,” Cruz vowed, later adding: “ISIS and radical Islamic terrorism will face no more determined foe than I will be. [...]
But Rubio and Cruz returned to the fray later on as they tried to cast each other as soft on illegal immigration. "I led the fight against [Rubio's] legalization-amnesty bill," Cruz charged.