What America needs is Ted Cruz as the GOP nominee

-6Todd Gillman of the Dallas News, reporting from Iowa on the reaction of Texas Sen. Ted Cruz to the Democratic debate Tuesday night:

“It was more socialism, more pacifism, more weakness and less Constitution,” he told about 100 people crammed into a motel lobby in Kalona, a small town in southeastern Iowa. “It was a recipe to destroy a country.”

Speaking after the campaign event with reporters outside the Dutch Country Inn, Cruz acknowledged that he hadn’t actually watched the debate. During much of it, he was stumping at a Pizza Hut a half-hour away.

But he had firm views on what viewers saw.

“We’re seeing our freedoms taken away every day, and last night was an audition for who would wear the jackboot most vigorously. Last night was an audition for who would embrace government power for who would strip your and my individual liberties,” he said.

You could make a strong case that the Republican campaign is shaping up perfectly for Cruz. In the latest Fox poll, he has inched up into double figures, behind frontrunners Donald Trump and Ben Carson. As demonstrated by his rhetoric about jackboots coming to strip your liberties and destroy the country, he’s positioned to claim much of their support should either of them falter. And he has more cash in his campaign chest than any other candidate.

More importantly, if we get a confrontation in Washington over the debt ceiling and budget, as appears almost certain, Cruz is again well positioned to benefit. Given the mood of the party, the only thing that he would like better than playing conservative hero against Majority Leader Harry Reid would be to cast Majority Leader Mitch McConnell in the same role.

A few months from now, assuming that Trump and Carson will indeed fade and that Jeb Bush is going nowhere, it is entirely conceivable that we’ll see Cruz and Marco Rubio as the last two standing, and in that contest Cruz would have the far better claim on the conservative heart of the party.

As political guru Stu Rothenberg points out, a Cruz nomination would give the conservatives exactly what they’ve claimed to have wanted since at least 1988: A “true conservative” on the presidential ballot who isn’t shy about drawing contrasts with the Democrats, and who will bring all these supposedly “disenchanted conservatives” back to the ballot box to vote for him. In short, it’s “time to make the anti-establishment wing of the GOP put up or shut up.”

Rothenberg doesn’t think much of Cruz’ chances in a general election. To the contrary, he predicts it would result in a historic whooping along the lines of LBJ’s defeat of Barry Goldwater back in 1964, with Democrats sweeping the Senate and potentially even the House as well.

He concludes:

“So why should the GOP nominate Cruz if it entails so much risk? Because a clear and convincing defeat is the only thing in the foreseeable future that has any chance of convincing Freedom Caucus types in the Republican Party that their strategy is flawed and they have helped damage the Republican brand. (Alas, even a crushing defeat wouldn’t convince everyone.)

Until that happens, Republicans, and the country in general, seem destined to suffer through more months of legislative shutdowns and gridlock that will further weaken the country.”

Give them what they want, and see if they really wanted it.

Reader Comments 0

783 comments
dreema
dreema

I don't think even an overwhelming defeat will persuade the true believers. Like the true believers who retreated to Masada and went down fighting, these extremists will brook no compromise, reality and data be damned. Hopefully, however, saner heads might eventually prevail and finally marginalize the radical anarchists who pretend to be "conservative" while conserving nothing and threatening to destroy much.

Jeff Lebowsky
Jeff Lebowsky

Reading this post reminds me of why I have not bothered reading the AJC opinion columns for many, many years, just a bit too harsh for the Duderino. Where is the love brother? I mean were all Americans here aren't we... We all want each other to do well and be left alone to follow our own bliss (without force or fraud)... My buddy Walter does get a bit worked up by what he terms the rampant fascist elements in American society... and I just tell him "Yeah, well, you know, that’s just, like, your opinion, man" cuz the Dude abides...

LarryLinn
LarryLinn

The fate of Don Quixote Cruz is to charge the windmills in the sky, not to become President of the United States.

McGarnagle
McGarnagle

This article also applies to Trump, Carson, and Fiorina. The republicans are in for a wake up call come election time. The same ones claiming victory are the sames ones that thought Romney and McCain were going to win as well. Anyone seen Dick Morris lately? Not on fox news anymore.

Eye wonder
Eye wonder

sheets; 4th place still up for grabs ;)


Surelyyoujest
Surelyyoujest

Wow - first we have a Muslim name (Hussein) as POTUS; now Hillary wants a Castro as her VP - you cant' make up this stuff!

JKToole
JKToole

@Surelyyoujest Dullard, what about Cruz? He's Cuban and non-native born. Wasn't this column about him?

Surelyyoujest
Surelyyoujest

@JKToole 

Wow - are you really so dense that you missed the whole point of the names...........

JKToole
JKToole

@Surelyyoujest I must be. If you were being ironic, satirical or comedic, don't quit your day job.   Given the nature of contributors here, I thought you were quite literal. If you were being literal ... well, never mind.

dreema
dreema

@Surelyyoujest You do realize that the United States is a nation of immigrants. Unless your ancestors were here before the European colonists arrived, you too came from foreign roots. Washington, Lincoln, Castro, Hussein--none of these names are "native" to this continent.

DownInAlbany
DownInAlbany

A CBS poll out last week found that 71 percent of registered voters think it was inappropriate for Clinton to use a private email server as secretary of state. Nearly 60 percent of those surveyed are not satisfied with Clinton’s explanation of the controversy. A Fox News poll from last week, taken after McCarthy’s comments and the public claims from the former Benghazi staffer, found that voters by a 2-to-1 margin believe Clinton has been dishonest about the emails, and nearly half of those surveyed believe the congressional investigation should continue.

Bernie missed his chance to be honest on this one.  If he had stated that "...the Democrats are tired of hearing about the damned emails..." he would have some credibility.  And, it's sooooo difficult to regain, once you've lost it.

honested
honested

@DownInAlbany 

Were those polled selected for their extensive knowledge of State Department protocol and the evolution of electronic communications requirements underway or were the questions just directed at whoever answered the phone?

As for the FakeNewz poll, were the respondents aware of what year it is?

Nick_Danger
Nick_Danger

@Visual_Cortex @DownInAlbany 

Did they even ask what percentage would vote for her (the only question that really matters)?  Or was the poll just intent upon impugning her character?

Nick_Danger
Nick_Danger

@DownInAlbany 

"and nearly half of those surveyed believe the congressional investigation should continue"

SO, it's fair to say that your poll shows that most Americans believe the investigations of Mrs. Clinton should cease?

Visual_Cortex
Visual_Cortex

@DownInAlbany

Did your poll ask people if they thought the media were bored and lazy? Did they ask if they thought the emails affect their own lives and livelihoods in any conceivable way?

Lee30519
Lee30519

Ted Cruz has no chance of getting the nomination within the GOP party

Surelyyoujest
Surelyyoujest

Cruz has said for the last month that Trump followers will come to him once Trump loses steam, so your headline may come true. A Cruz/Rubio ticket may be hard for the Dems to defeat, as would a Trump/Carson ticket - A Carson/Rubio, or Rubio/Carson, ticket would be unstoppable!

LordHelpUs
LordHelpUs

@Surelyyoujest  If Cruz, Trump or Carson are ANYWHERE on the ticket, Hillary will break out the champagne reeeeeal early on election night.

JKLtwo
JKLtwo

@LordHelpUs @Surelyyoujest Sorry the Demwits will take her out long before then.

She'll only have champagne if that's what she's using to drown her sorrows...

Normd
Normd

Have any of all y'all seen the site Duffle Blog?  It's sort of a military Onion and funny as heck.

Finn-McCool
Finn-McCool

Ben Carson is suspending his campaign temporarily so he can legally pocket your donations for a couple of weeks?

CHA-CHING!

td1234
td1234

@Finn-McCool Wrong. He and every other candidate, that does not currently hold elective office,  can pay themselves a salary equal to the salary of the office they are seeking out of campaign funds. In other words all the candidates running, excluding the Senators, can pay themselves $450,000 to run around the country shaking hands and giving speeches. 

jefgee
jefgee

@Normd Kind of clever, but no Christian theology is based on the idea that mankind was created in Original Sin. Rather that mankind was created with free will and chose to be sinful. 

DownInAlbany
DownInAlbany

You guys may want to brush up on the details and punishment of the Espionage Act.

Just so that you understand the proceedings.