Cruz on Lowering Drinking Age to 18: 'There Is Not a Constitutional Protection for a Right to Get Drunk'

Micky Wootten | June 9, 2022 | 12:16pm EDT
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Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas)    (Getty Images)
Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) (Getty Images)

(CNS News) -- When asked whether the legal age to drink alcohol, 21, should be lowered to 18, which is the legal age to purchase a rifle, such as the AR-15, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) said, “there is not a constitutional protection in the Bill of Rights to get drunk.” 

At the Capitol on June 8, CNS News asked Senator Cruz, “Under federal law a person can buy a rifle at 18 but can’t buy alcohol until they’re 21. Should the drinking age be lowered?”

Cruz responded, “There is not a constitutional protection in the Bill of Rights for a right to get drunk.”

He continued, “There is a constitutional protection for the right to keep and bear arms. That is fundamentally about the right each of us has to protect ourselves and our families. So, no.”

According to Federal law, the minimum age for a person to buy a handgun is 21 from a licensed vendor and 18 from an unlicensed vendor. The minimum age to buy a rifle, such as an AR-15, is 18.

Two laws, the National Firearms Act of 1934 and the Gun Control Act of 1968, are where most of the “significant federal requirements regarding firearms,” can be found. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms (ATF) is the agency that oversees the enforcement of these laws.

Both the Uvalde, Texas shooter and the Buffalo, N.Y. shooter were able to legally purchase the rifles they used. However, police had ordered the Buffalo shooter suspect to undergo a psychiatric evaluation months before he allegedly committed a mass murder. This ordered evaluation did not appear in his background check.

On June 8, the House of Representatives voted to pass the “Protecting Our Kids Act,” which would raise the federal minimum age to buy rifles and shotguns to 21, barring a few exceptions, and also regulate gun trafficking, “ghost guns,” gun storage, and bump stocks.

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