Skip to comments.Ted Cruz must change if he wants to be president
Posted on 06/02/2014 12:34:53 AM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet
Republican Sen. Ted Cruz, hero to the tea party and villain to liberals, predicted Saturday that Republicans will win control of the Senate in November, then went on to edge out Dr. Ben Carson in a straw poll taken on the last day of the 2014 Republican Leadership Conference in New Orleans.
Cruz had uplifting words for the party faithful in attendance. I am convinced we are going to retake the United States Senate in 2014, the junior senator from Texas said, no equivocation whatsoever in his distinct voice.
Cruz is the latest in a long line of polarizing Republican politicians who are skilled at speaking to people who share their political and cultural views but who come across as nothing more than provocateurs to Democrats and many independents who find their positions on a wide variety of social issues only slightly to the left of Genghis Khan.
The 2014 RLC featured the usual cast of characters, including Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus, former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, soon-to-be former Texas Gov. Rick Perry and Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal. Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul was not in attendance, which may explain why Cruz won the straw poll. Paul finished third, behind Cruz and Carson but ahead of former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, who did not attend the event, and Perry. The conservative website therightscoop.com posted the full results.
Should Cruz and Paul both run for president in 2016, they will be battling for the same voters conservative Republicans disenchanted with the presidential nominating process. The last two election cycles saw relatively moderate candidates Sen. John McCain of Arizona and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney take the GOP nominations, and both years, hard-right Republicans werent exactly brimming with enthusiasm for their partys nominees.
Many of the politicians attending the RLC have either failed in past presidential bids or are gearing up for a go at it next time around. Santorum and Perry, who came up short in 2012, are likely to give it another try; Jindal and Cruz are giving every indication that they will seek the nations top office in 2016.
But how can Cruz, with a 23 percent favorability rating nationally, hope to compete with likely Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, who enjoys a 50 percent favorability rating?
Unless Cruz undergoes some sort of a dramatic transformation, he cant. Without growing up at least a little bit, he will be just another Republican sacrificial lamb if he somehow emerges as the nominee out of a very crowded GOP field.
This leaves the Republican Party between the proverbial rock and hard place. The more conservative Republicans most certainly dont want repeats of 2008 and 2012, when the eventual GOP nominee was at least somewhat moderate when compared to other presidential hopefuls in the field. But if Cruz emerges as the Republican nominee in 2016, any winning strategy will have to rely on converting swing voters to see things his way, and his way is not the way of most Americans.
Consider one of his biggest applause lines at the RLC speech:
[In] Texas, like Louisiana, we define gun control real simple, Cruz said. Thats hittin what you aim at. And so three of us, Rand Paul, [Utah Sen.] Mike Lee and myself sent a very short and sweet note to Harry Reid we said we will filibuster any legislation that undermines the Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms.
While such rhetoric may go over well with RLC attendees, the fact is that a December 2013 CBS News poll found that 85 percent of all Americans and 84 percent of gun owners supported federal background checks on firearms purchases.
Cruz talks a good game when hes preaching to the choir, but his positions on a wide variety of hot-button issues do not jibe with those of American voters. He is opposed to same-sex marriage, for example, and ontheissues.org even says he opposes gay pride parades. A May 21 Gallup poll found support for same-sex marriage at 55 percent nationally, with 8 in 10 voters under 30 supporting marriages between people of the same sex.
In January, Cruz criticized Obama for not enforcing federal marijuana laws in Colorado, where voters legalized use of the drug in 2012. Nationally, 55 percent of respondents in a January CNN/ORC poll said recreational use of marijuana should be legal. Cruz may think that he can persuade voters to come around to seeing things his way on these kinds of issues, and theres always an outside chance that he can. But a better approach for Cruz to take if he wants to win the presidency is to try and understand why most Americans feel the way they do on social issues as he opens his mind to the possibility of seeing things differently.
If Cruz could begin seeing social issues in a less reactionary, judgmental way, he might have a chance at persuading voters to at least give serious consideration to his economic policies, which in turn might increase his chances of winning the White House. But if he stays mired in rigid thinking about guns and retains discriminatory attitudes toward gays, lesbians and marijuana users, hell never be more than just a conservative darling who gives a good pep talk but does little more than stand in the way of progress when it comes to doing the right thing for the American people.
Additional sources and resources:
The GOPs grifter problem, Slate, May 31, 2014
Ted Cruz mocks gun control advocates, The Daily Beast, May 31, 2014
Punditty is based in Santa Cruz, California, United States of America, and is an Anchor for Allvoices.
tough to change ones natural born status...
Guess you missed this, huh?
Is Ted Cruz a natural-born citizen eligible to serve as president? [Yes! And I support him! JimRob]
the writer of this piece:
The Punditty Project features Darren Richardson as the pundit, the punster, and even Punditty himself. Three hats, same head.
The Punditty Project features Darren Richardson as the pundit, the punster, and even Punditty himself. Three hats, same head....Darren has been the managing editor of The American Pundit political writing contest since 2012. He worked in daily journalism for more than 15 years as a professional headline writer and copy editor, most recently for the San Francisco Chronicle
Stuff it, moron!
Lol. Only Republicans must change never Democrats like Hillary.
I actually know some Obots who could be flipped if the Republican is eloquent and Conservative especially on social issues. Yes I know its odd but all the Obots I know are very Christian and don’t like the gay stuff or the pandering to slackers who refuse to work.
We’re backing Ted Cruz precisely because he’s unwavering in his conservatism, you liberal moron!
I swear, I’ll scream bloody murder if I hear the RNC use the words `big tent’ in 2016.
“Liberal moron” refers to the author of this `GOP Club’ screed, not yourself.
We called those Reagan Democrats, persuadable, lunch-buckets, or Archie Bunkers in the old days.
They loved Alan Keyes and were upset he didn’t win in the primaries.
So if Cruz wants to become President, he must first become a moderate like Mitt Romney and John McCain?
a natural born citizen is someone that is a citizen naturally... as there are no alternatives.
at birth, his choices were: US, canadian, and british
NOT natural born
doesn’t matter who claims he is. no amount of insistence will change the facts.
If Cruz changes, he loses the base. That strategy gave us President McCain and President Romney - NOT.
Cruz - West
Rigid thinking? Standing on principle.
I could pick it apart but why bother?
This article is utter bullsh!t. Not only do we already have "federal background checks" at FFLs, people in polls who are asked, "do you support the feds having to sign off if you sell a rifle to your buddy at work?" the overwhelming response is NO. But of course, the gun-hating media will never bring this up.
Cruz might not be able to be elected by the Soviet states like California, Noo Yawk and Floria. It really doesn't matter who's president--this country is on its last breath anyway, as an intact entity, and the bureaucrats and lib judges are the real "government"--tyranny--anyway.
But I will still vote for Ted Cruz, if he runs for president.
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