Cruz Shows the Contrast, in More Ways Than One


You’ve heard the hype.  Now, if you haven’t already done so, take 25 minutes and watch Ted Cruz’s Republican convention speech.

Actually watching the video, I’d say by far the most disturbing aspect is the booing — the inability of the assembled Republicans to muster some grace.  The new GOP apparently cannot accept somebody who articulates a beautiful vision of the party’s perhaps-erstwhile values if he doesn’t at the same time utter a magic phrase of endorsement.  In that regard, it truly is now Trump’s GOP.  Me, I agree with Jonah Goldberg:

This is part of the corruption of Trump. He called Ted Cruz a liar every day and in every way for months (it used to be considered a breach in decorum to straight up call an opponent a liar, never mind use it as a nickname). The insults against his wife, the cavalier birtherism, the disgusting JFK assassination theories about his Dad: These things are known. And yet the big conversation of the day is Ted Cruz’s un-sportsmanlike behavior? For real? But forget Cruz for a moment. For over a year, Trump has degraded politics in some of the most vile ways. His respect for the Republican Party as the home of conservatism is on par with Napoleon’s respect for churches when he converted them into stables.

Read the whole thing.  Goldberg, like Cruz, is intent on exiting the Trump era (whenever that may be) with his courage, integrity, and well-formed political philosophy intact.  People who claim to share at least some significant share of that philosophy and yet who can boo its articulation if it does not mix in Trump’s cult of personality bring home just how much this election may hinge on a seesaw of alternating disgust.

  • Joe Smith

    If this were truly a contested convention, then maybe Senator Cruz’s speech would fit. But it is not. Go back to 1976 – Did Reagan “endorse” Ford – no, not really; but he did say:

    “We must go forth from here united, determined that what a great general said a few years ago is true: There is no substitute for victory, Mr. President.”

    I guess you can interpret that two ways – one would be that President Ford is not the better candidate, but he’s better than Gov Carter and winning with the lesser Republican nominee is better than the Democrat winning . Alternatively, you might say that “the party needs to unite under Ronald Reagan and let’s suck it up for four years because there is no substitute for winning with the right person” – winning with a sub-par “Republican” is no different than the Democrat winning.

    I don’t know which one is what Reagan meant – he never campaigned for Ford but I think he did stump for down ballot republicans with an eye for 1980. However, he was gracious to the President and at least left the ambiguity about what he meant while leaving no doubt he would be back in 1980.

    So Trump was mean to him – Ford painted Reagan in a less than flattering way too. Cruz signed a pledged to endorse the nominee and at least he could have done was make his points and then exit with a half-hearted non-endorsement that could be spun as at least keeping his word.

    However, even if Cruz was of the mindset of Reagan, Cruz came off in the end after what was a good speech as a whiny loser who wants to get credit for showing up compared to his other failed wanna-bes and proving he’s the smartest guy in the room. No, the most disturbing aspect was, despite his brilliant mind, seeing Cruz confirm his reputation for putting Cruz first and for being generally disliked.

    Maybe that’s why Reagan was the Great Communicator and became President while Ted Cruz, who perhaps should be a Supreme Court justice, will just be in the future an ex-Senator from Texas and a multiple loser in the Republican presidential nominee process.

  • Rhett Hardwick

    “His respect for the Republican Party as the home of conservatism is on par with Napoleon’s respect for churches when he converted them into stables.”

    It has been said that my 13th chromosome is shaped like an elephant. But still, I would appreciate a cogent explanation of how the Republicans differ significantly from the Democrats. When what’s her name from California announced “We have to pass this bill to see what’s in it” and the Republicans didn’t walk out, they left me.

    The simple truth about Trump is that the Republican establishment could not produce a candidate that could catch fire.

  • Mike678

    The big news of the day is freedom–especially free speech, diversity of thought, and so forth–not talked to, but demonstrated. Trump allowed Cruz to speak knowing who the man was–and perhaps, what he was going to do. Contrast this to the Democrat machine that seeks to restrict the free flow of speech and to reduce other freedoms we have enjoyed and prospered under. Yes–many of the delegates were too small to see the bigger picture, but then again, they are giants compared to the trolls that sometimes visit this site.

  • Rhett Hardwick

    “It used to be a breach in decorum to straight up call an opponent a liar” A lot of things “used to be”. What do you say about a candidate who claims to have been “taken under sniper fire”? How do you reconcile her behavior during the “bimbo eruptions” with her current stand on “women’s rights”? Of course, “decorum” has always permitted “whispering campaigns”. Great, we all know it but can’t say it.

    “the disgusting JFK assassination theories about his Dad:” At the time of the incident Cubans figured prominently in the JFK investigation. Cubans hated him, they believed that he had allowed the slaughter of their sons by withholding promised air support at the Bay of Pigs. Almost unique among immigrants, early Cuban refugees were steadfastly Republican. Largely because of their hatred for JFK.

  • Paul Kelly

    I’ll give Cruz this much credit. At least he had the guts to show up in give his speach .He could have just mailed it Rubio. Even if you don’t like the guy, it’s refreshing to see a politician take the heat for his beliefs instead of looking like a total waffler…Back in Andrew Jackson’s day , they probably would’ve settled it by a duel.