Jul 15, 2022 - Politics & Policy

Mile-long school bus convoy visits Ted Cruz's home to protest gun violence

Sen. Ted Cruz speaks at a press conference at the U.S. Capitol on June 22.
Sen. Ted Cruz during a press conference at the U.S. Capitoll last month. Photo: Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images

A mobile museum honoring children killed by gun violence headed to the home of Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) on Thursday.

Driving the news: The NRA Children's Museum — a convoy of 52 yellow school buses filled with items and 4,368 empty seats to represent the children killed by gun violence since 2020 — kicked off its campaign by visiting the Texas senator, who is a staunch opponent of gun control.

  • The mobile museum was created by Change the Ref, a gun control advocacy group founded by Manuel and Patricia Oliver. Their son, Joaquin Oliver, was killed in the 2018 Parkland school shooting.
  • Manuel Oliver also hand-delivered a letter to Cruz that Joaquin wrote when he was 12 years old, urging for universal background checks.

The big picture: "To commemorate this horrific historic moment, we are showing American voters the toll these politicians have taken on our children's lives with this all-too-real archive," Manuel Oliver said in a press release.

  • "And this is only the beginning," he added. "We will not stop with Sen. Ted Cruz. To every politician who has stood by, taken NRA money, and refused to listen to the people they represent: the museum is on the way to honor you next."
  • The release cites the CDC, saying that firearms have overtaken car accidents to become the leading cause of death in children. 4,368 kids have died due to gun violence since 2020.

Background: Cruz has received more contributions from gun rights groups than any other GOP senator.

What they're saying: A spokesperson for Cruz said in an emailed statement that Cruz is committed to enacting policies that would stop school shootings."

  • "To that end, he introduced legislation to double the number of school resource officers, hire 15,000 school-based mental health professionals to ensure there is early intervention to identify and help at-risk kids, to provide significant resources for enhanced school safety, and to improve the gun background system and prosecute persons who try to illegally buy guns," the spokesperson added.

Editor's note: This article has been updated with comment from Cruz's office.

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