Before You Might Vote For Ted Cruz
January 31, 2016
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Just think about this. All of these stories came out over the past week or so as he is making his closing pitch to the voters of Iowa and New Hampshire.
- At a campaign event, Ted Cruz claimed that he had lost his insurance because of Obamacare and, obviously, if he is President this kind of thing will never, ever, ever happen to another American. The only problem, as he tried to attach himself to those who claim to have been harmed by Obamacare, is that he never lost his insurance. Instead, his provider switched him from a PPO to an HMO. They notified him in a letter, which he conveniently failed to read. So, yes, Ted Cruz wants you to vote for him to be President of the United States and he can’t bother with reading his mail.
- Iowa voters have received mailers from the Cruz campaign which disclose their voting history (nothing more than the percentage of elections they have participated in) and purport to grade them for their level of participation. The mailer also discloses the voting history of the person’s neighbors and suggests that failure to participate in the caucus on Monday could result in a violation of the law. When challenged on the appropriateness of his mailer, Cruz had this to say, “I will apologize to nobody for using every tool we can to encourage Iowa voters to come out to vote.” Think about that for a moment. While he frames his response in terms of getting people to vote, let’s be clear. This is about him getting people out to vote for him and nothing more. It turns out, also that other campaigns have used similar tactics, including Rubio during this same campaign season. It doesn’t matter. Whoever uses this tactic, whether Democrat or Republican, should be drawn and quartered.
- And then there’s today’s doozy. Here’s a quote: “I’m 45 years old,” he said. “I have never once had the opportunity to go to a general election ballot and vote for a Reaganite on the ballot. We are inches away from doing that right here.” Apparently, he’s also suggesting that he will be the first true Reaganite nominee if he wins the nomination this year. So, let’s unpack this a little bit. His formula for being a true Reaganite is supporting Reagan in the 1980 Republican Primary. Once you get past the Reagan presidency, you have George H.W. as the Republican nominee in 1988 and 1992. Cruz is right, George H.W. likely didn’t support Reagan in the 1980 primary because he was running against him. Hard to argue, however, that George H.W. wasn’t a supporter of Reagan since he served as his Vice President for eight years. Then, we get to Bob Dole, the Republican nominee in 1996. He also ran in the primary in 1980, so yes, he also was not a clear supporter of Reagan then for obvious reasons. But as one of the Republican leaders in the Senate during the Reagan presidency, it would be hard to find much evidence that Dole did not do his part to implement Reagan policies and programs. Which brings us to George W., the nominee in 2000 and 2004. Who knows who he might have supported in 1980, but it’s hard to imagine he would have supported Reagan over his own father (see above, for George H.W.) and it’s hard to imagine holding that against the man. Following George W., the Republicans nominated John McCain in 2008. In 1980, McCain was still in the Navy and prohibited from public participation in elections. In 1982, however, he ran for Congress as a staunch supporter and ally of Reagan’s. As for Romney, who was the 2012 nominee, who knows what he was doing in 1980. Here’s the fascinating construct of Cruz’s argument. He doesn’t qualify by his definition as a Reaganite either — he was only ten years old in 1980 and couldn’t possibly have had much of anything to do with the election then, let alone voted in it.
I offer these little tidbits to my fellow American readers of this blog. I’ll be the first to admit that politicians of every stripe play these stupid games and it’s the single biggest reason there is so much disinterest in voting in this country. But, there are the tactics we know about and the tactics we don’t know about. And, at the moment, these are the things we know about Ted Cruz (and I haven’t even got to the legal case for why he may not even be eligible for the office due to his birth in Canada). Would you really want this kind of “do anything, say anything” individual serving as your President?
[Edited to Add: Turns out the information in the campaign mailers may not have even been accurate. Where is the point at which somebody loses the right to be considered for the office?]