Skip to comments.Ted Cruz Is Winning: Like it or not, it's his party now
Posted on 02/15/2014 8:38:41 AM PST by 2ndDivisionVet
These days, its popular to claim that Senator Ted Cruz is only looking out for himself. And this is undoubtedly true. Much in the same way John McCain is only looking out for himself and Chuck Schumer is only looking out for himself, and every millionaire Senator looking to hold on to his or her seat in perpetuity is looking out for #1. Cruz just happens to be better at it.
Take the kerfuffle over the debt-ceiling vote. When Mitch McConnell met with Senate Republicans colleagues this week, he proposed that they allow a vote on the House debt limit bill without GOP objection, a tacit surrender that would allow passage with a simple 51-vote majority. The 55 Senate Democrats, who would rather see the government shut down than concede to compromise, would win and then save the GOP from the inevitable political blowback that accompanies capitulation. (Now, if only the Republicans deployed the same level of creativity in their battles as they do in their surrenders, victory would be theirs!)
Rather than allow this expedient maneuver to place, Cruz demanded the Senate reach a 60-vote threshold, forcing five Republicans to join Democrats in the hike. This, predictably, infuriated the GOP establishment. McCain accused Cruz of instigating needless drama that helps to explain why Republicans remain a minority.
Yeah, thats why.
Whats Cruzs sin here? That he forced the GOP to be transparent about its position a position that seems pretty reasonable considering the political realities of the situation. According to Betsy Woodruffs reporting, most Republicans had no interest in voting for an increase. Its preposterous to claim, no matter how often the Tea Party does, that moderate GOPers are no better than liberals simply because theyre losing on this issue. But if the debt ceiling isnt a hill worth dying on and it certainly isnt leadership should have explained this explicitly rather than leading on the base. It was only back in January when McConnell told the faithful on national television that some of the most significant legislation passed in the past 50 years has been in conjunction with the debt limit. I think for the president to ask for a clean debt ceiling when we have a debt this size of our economy is irresponsible. What McConnell should have added then is: but theres nothing we can do about it right now. We have to work on winning more seats, and then we can stop this endless cycle of irresponsible spending.
In a recent piece, National Reviews Charles Cooke defends the GOP establishments handling of this and other battles: In my estimation, the only thing of which Mitch McConnell and John Boehner have been guilty in the past few years is to have worked tirelessly within political reality and to have reacted sensitively to the hands that they were dealt. Overall, I agree. Moreover, the House doesnt get enough credit for putting a hard stop to the Democrats overly ambitious progressive agenda. Obstructing bad legislation is as valuable, if not more valuable, than working to make terrible legislation marginally less terrible. The GOP House successfully brought balance to Washington after a hard left turn by Democrats.
But lifes not fair. McConnell and Boehner dont lead, they manage. And theyre about to lose the party. For starters, any fresh conservative ideas in the Senate are coming from Mike Lee, Rand Paul and Marco Rubio (whos on thin ice, I know). They, like Ted Cruz, and like Senator Barack Obama before him, understand the appeal of idealism over pragmatism to those out of power. Obama voted against what is the now-sacred debt ceiling hike because he had nothing to lose and everything to gain. If youre going to surrender, at the very least dont make it look easy. And dont try to cover up the terms.
As much as some of us are fans of dysfunction, tactically speaking, playing defense forever is no strategy. Yes, the establishment works tirelessly within the political realities of the day. Cruz, it seems, is more interested in changing the reality of his situation. Forcing a 60-vote threshold on the debt ceiling wasnt only about the debt ceiling (which Cruz surely understood would be hiked), and it wasnt only about his presidential ambitions (which he surely has), but creating the type of problems for the GOP that will help bring a bunch of Matt Bevins into the Senate and solidify his position.
If they attain more power, Tea Party conservatives may accept that tactical victories can often have more impact than a hollow but self-gratifying stand. At some point, they may accept that one of most effective weapons in policymaking one that the Left uses with great success is incrementalism. Fair or not, though, the problem with todays Republican Party is that the only incrementalism people see is incremental surrender. Like the completely unnecessary debt ceiling lose. And if the establishment doesnt turn that perception around in a hurry, they wont be the establishment for much longer.
'Jam yesterday, jam tomorrow, but never jam today.'
The mantra of 'wait until' is a bunch of crap. When the GOP held both houses, they spent like drunken sailors.
It IS undoubtedly true. This guy is the same kind of publicity hound as Chucky Schumer. His only agenda is the advancement of Ted Cruz. As a career military guy who learned that teamwork builds strength, I view Cruz as a self serving individual, totally void of principle. I would not want a person like this in my unit.
I'd believe them, but they were no different when they controlled both houses and the presidency.
its popular to claim that Senator Ted Cruz is only looking out for himself. And this is undoubtedly true.
The cynical assume everyone is as cynical as themselves.
Bull. As a retired Infantryman I’d have him in my unit in a heartbeat. REMFs may disagree.
His principles are the Constitution, which is in dire need of some support from DC these days, since no one there seems to remember it exists. Except Cruz, Lee, et al.
I don’t know what you elected him to do, but so far I can’t think of a single thing or piece of legislation that he has accomplished other than to shut the Government down for a few days. Maybe that’s an accomplishment in your eyes, but it only helped the Democrat propoganda machine.Let me know when he chalkes up his first “accomplishment” as a legislator.
It's popular with whom? Some of us like people who stand on right principles rather than cower and sell out like this guy's favorite Republicans.
What’s not to like?
That's what I elected him to do. Disrupt the GOP establishment, and make life uncomfortable for them, and open them up to being primaried.
As I said, get used to him. He'll be there for a while if he keeps it up.
It’s a simple matter of lead and we shall follow.
Ted Cruz is William Wallace.
John Boner and Mitch McConnel and Eric Cantor and John Mccain And Lindsey Graham and Pete King and Daryl Issa and Kathy McMorris McWhatever are Scottish Nobles.
I see you’re one of the fools that believes 18% of government employees taking a paid vacation equals a government shutdown.
Oh look it’s the Ted Cruz stalker.
Hi stalker, stalk much?
Cruz attended high school at Faith West Academy in Katy, Texas, and later graduated from Second Baptist High School in Houston as valedictorian in 1988. During high school, Cruz participated in a Houston-based group called the Free Market Education Foundation where Cruz learned about free-market economic philosophers such as Milton Friedman, Friedrich Hayek, Frédéric Bastiat and Ludwig von Mises. The program was run by Rolland Storey and Cruz entered the program at the age of 13.
Cruz graduated cum laude from Princeton University with a Bachelor of Arts from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs in 1992. While at Princeton, he competed for the American Whig-Cliosophic Societys Debate Panel and won the top speaker award at both the 1992 U.S. National Debating Championship and the 1992 North American Debating Championship. In 1992, he was named U.S. National Speaker of the Year and Team of the Year (with his debate partner, David Panton). Cruz was also a semi-finalist at the 1995 World Universities Debating Championship, making him Princetons highest-ranked debater at the championship. Princetons debate team later named their annual novice championship after Cruz.
Cruzs senior thesis on the separation of powers, titled Clipping the Wings of Angels, draws its inspiration from a passage attributed to President James Madison: If angels were to govern men, neither external nor internal controls on government would be necessary. Cruz argued that the drafters of the Constitution intended to protect the rights of their constituents, and the last two items in the Bill of Rights offered an explicit stop against an all-powerful state. Cruz wrote: They simply do so from different directions. The Tenth stops new powers, and the Ninth fortifies all other rights, or non-powers.
After graduating from Princeton, Cruz attended Harvard Law School, graduating magna cum laude in 1995 with a Juris Doctor. While at Harvard Law, Cruz was a primary editor of the Harvard Law Review, and executive editor of the Harvard Journal of Law and Public Policy, and a founding editor of the Harvard Latino Law Review. Referring to Cruzs time as a student at Harvard Law, Professor Alan Dershowitz said, Cruz was off-the-charts brilliant. At Harvard Law, Cruz was a John M. Olin Fellow in Law and Economics.
Cruz currently serves on the Board of Advisors of the Texas Review of Law and Politics.
Cruz giving a speech to the Montgomery County Republican Party meeting held in Conroe, Texas, on August 19, 2013
Cruz served as a law clerk to J. Michael Luttig of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit in 1995 and William Rehnquist, Chief Justice of the United States in 1996. Cruz was the first Hispanic ever to clerk for a Chief Justice of the United States.
After Cruz finished his clerkships, he took a position with Cooper, Carvin & Rosenthal, which is now known as Cooper & Kirk, LLC, from 1997 to 1998.
In 1998, Cruz served as private counsel for Congressman John Boehner during Boehners lawsuit against Congressman Jim McDermott for releasing a tape recording of a Boehner telephone conversation.
Cruz joined the George W. Bush presidential campaign in 1999 as a domestic policy adviser, advising then-Governor George W. Bush on a wide range of policy and legal matters, including civil justice, criminal justice, constitutional law, immigration, and government reform.
Cruz assisted in assembling the Bush legal team, devise strategy, and draft pleadings for filing with the Supreme Court of Florida and U.S. Supreme Court, the specific case being Bush v. Gore, during the 2000 Florida presidential recounts, leading to two successful decisions for the Bush team.
After President Bush took office, Cruz served as an associate deputy attorney general in the U.S. Justice Department and as the director of policy planning at the U.S. Federal Trade Commission.
Texas Solicitor General
Appointed to the office of Solicitor General of Texas by Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott, Cruz served in that position from 2003 to 2008.
Cruz has authored more than 80 United States Supreme Court briefs and presented 43 oral arguments, including nine before the United States Supreme Court. Cruzs record of having argued before the Supreme Court nine times is more than any practicing lawyer in Texas or any current member of Congress. Cruz has commented on his nine cases in front of the U.S. Supreme Court: We ended up year after year arguing some of the biggest cases in the country. There was a degree of serendipity in that, but there was also a concerted effort to seek out and lead conservative fights.
In the landmark case of District of Columbia v. Heller, Cruz drafted the amicus brief signed by attorneys general of 31 states, which said that the D.C. handgun ban should be struck down as infringing upon the Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms. Cruz also presented oral argument for the amici states in the companion case to Heller before the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.
In addition to his success in Heller, Cruz has successfully defended the constitutionality of Ten Commandments monument on the Texas State Capitol grounds before the Fifth Circuit and the U.S. Supreme Court, winning 5-4 in Van Orden v. Perry.
In 2004, Cruz was involved in another high-profile case, which was Elk Grove Unified School District v. Newdow. In Newdow, Cruz wrote a U.S. Supreme Court brief on behalf of all 50 states which argued that a non-custodial parent does not have standing in court to sue to stop a public school from requiring its students to recite of the Pledge of Allegiance. The Supreme Court upheld the position of Cruzs brief in a 9-0 decision.
Cruz served as lead counsel for the state and successfully defended the multiple litigation challenges to the 2003 Texas congressional redistricting plan in state and federal district courts and before the U.S. Supreme Court, winning 5-4 in League of United Latin American Citizens v. Perry.
Cruz also successfully defended, in Medellin v. Texas, the State of Texas against an attempt by the International Court of Justice to re-open the criminal convictions of 51 murderers on death row throughout the United States.
Cruz has been named by American Lawyer magazine as one of the 50 Best Litigators under 45 in America, by The National Law Journal as one of the 50 Most Influential Minority Lawyers in America, and by Texas Lawyer as one of the 25 Greatest Texas Lawyers of the Past Quarter Century.
After leaving the Solicitor General position in 2008, he worked in a private law firm in Houston, Morgan, Lewis & Bockius, often representing corporate clients, until he was sworn in a U.S. Senator from Texas in 2013. At Morgan, Lewis, he led the firms U.S. Supreme Court and national appellate litigation practice.
In 2009, while working for Morgan, Lewis, Cruz formed and then abandoned a bid for state attorney general when the incumbent Attorney General Greg Abbott, who hired Cruz as Solicitor General, decided to run for re-election.
How's that "teamwork with the backstabbing RINOs been working for us lately?
CRUZ/RAND PAUL 2016
Save the Nation!
Get used to him. He is young and will be in your face a long time.
OMG Cruz didn’t shut down the government. Just damn.
The choice was weather the dems would give ANYTHING or if they’d allow the gov’t to shut down. They chose to not negotiate and shut it down. How anyone besides a myopic liberal could think otherwise makes me think you’re one of them.
And I don’t think legislation is the only accomplishment to measure one’s worth - else I’d have to recognize McCain, Cornyn, Graham, Shumer et al as “accomplished”. Not my definition and I can’t believe it’s a FReeper’s.