Week In Review: Everybody Hates Ted
Meet Ted Cruz, the Republican winter of the Iowa caucuses. He’s a liar, a jerk, and nobody who knows him remotely well — including his fellow Republicans and, quite possibly, his own family — appears to like him much.
Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) barely had time to bask in his come-from-behind in Iowa caucuses before that victory was called into question.
- The Sunday before the Iowa Caucuses, Cruz’s campaign came under fire from Iowa’s Secretary of State, for sending out fraudulent mailers aiming to drive voters to the polls by claiming they had committed “violations.”
- On Wednesday, Brietbart News broke the story that Cruz’s campaign encouraged precinct chairs in Iowa to tell Ben Carson’s supporters that he was leaving the race and urge them to vote for Cruz.
- A Cruz campaign staffer also sent an email implying that Carson was about to drop out of the peace, and that Carson voters should be urged to vote for Cruz instead.
Cruz apologized for the email and voicemail messages implying that Carson was on his way out of the race, but not for the mailers. Cruz might have been excused for thinking that was the case. After all, Carson’s own campaign announced that would be heading home to Florida to get some fresh clothes, while his rivals rushed back and forth between Iowa and New Hampshire. (Because there’s nowhere to do laundry or buy new clothes in Iowa?) On Wednesday, the Washington Post reported that Carson’s campaign would cut more than 50 staff positions — about half the campaign’s staff — and make other cuts due to lack of funds. (Meanwhile, a handful of Carson’s top advisors raked in millions.)
Both moves are apparently classic Ted Cruz, and in keeping with some of his most dominant character traits.
Ted Cruz The Liar
It’s a given that politicians lie. Lying convincingly and lying well are practically prerequisites for going into politics. The most talented politicians have a preternatural sense of when not to lie, but not because they’re suddenly enamored of the truth. They’re enamored of their own hides, and committed to saving them above all else.
Ted Cruz doesn’t seem to know when to stop lying. Lying about “voter violations” and another candidate dropping out of the race join a long list of the Cruz’s lies.
- He lied that Obamacare was “the biggest job-killer in this country,” having cost “millions of Americans” their jobs, and “forced” many into part-time work.
- He lied about ISIS “Crucifying Christians in Iraq, literally nailing Christians to trees.”
- He falsely claimed that a “strong bipartisan majority,” in the House voted to repeal Obamacare. (Two Democrats voting with Republicans is not a “strong bipartisan majority.”)
- He lied that “Blue Cross Blue Shield cancelled all their individual (health care) policies in the state of Texas, effective Dec. 31.”
- He lied that “Existing law right now requires 700 miles of double-layered border fencing” on the Mexico border.
- He cherry picked data and twisted an academic study to claim that “the overwhelming majority of violent criminals are Democrats.”
- He lied to his supporters in fundraising email, saying "I will never get—nor do I want— money from D.C. lobbyist or the special interest billionaires. This is from a guy who happily took money from casino billionaire Sheldon Adelson, and Wall Street hedge fund managers.
- He told a lie of omission when he neglected to report his $1 million Piggy loans during his 2012 Senate campaign, including a loan from Goldman Sachs, where his wife works.
- He’s lied so many times about his own record on immigration that Slate’s William Saletan dubbed him “the most gifted liar ever to run for president.”
- He lied when he accused the Black Lives Matter movement of “literally suggesting and embracing and celebrating the murder of police officers.”
- He lied when he called Planned Parenthood Shooter Robert Lewis Dear a “transgendered leftist activist.”
Perhaps Cruz can’t help it, because the fruit doesn’t fall far from the tree. His father, Rafael Cruz came under fire last year for fabricating his story of fighting for Fidel Castro only to become disillusioned with the Communist dictator. The elder Cruz’s former comrades said he marched in the streets a few times, and sprayed some graffiti, but was never a rebel leader engaged in gun running and blowing up buildings as he claimed in a memoir that appeared to be more fact than fiction.
Politifact found that 57% of the of Cruz’s statements tracked by the site were either “mostly false,” “false,” or “pants on fire.” It leaves the impression that when Cruz tells the truth, it’s probably because he just forgot to lie.
Ted Cruz the Jerk
In 1979, Steve Martin delighted movie audiences with his portrayal of a lovable jerk. Ted Cruz is not that kind of jerk.
What kind of jerk is Ted Cruz?
He’s the kind of jerk whose college roommate still can’t stop talking (and tweeting) about how godawful he is, and says things like, “I would rather have anybody else be the president of the United States. Anyone. I would rather pick somebody from the phone book.”
Yeah, turns out U.S. military commanders also think Ted is a jackass. Who's left at this point? https://t.co/AHpkxJnIbO
— Craig Mazin (@clmazin) February 1, 2016
I never saw him pray. Not once. https://t.co/ar6v1HxmMh
— Craig Mazin (@clmazin) February 4, 2016
He’s the kind of jerk whose attempts at human interaction creep out his own family. His mother shrinks from his embrace. His father can barely stand to hear him talk.
He’s the kind of jerk who wife tries desperately to avoid receiving a kiss from him.
He’s the kind of jerk who can’t even get a good night kiss from his seven-year-old daughter.
He’s the kind of Republican who wins the Iowa Caucuses.
Here’s the best of the rest of the worst in wingnuttery this week:
- Sen. Marco Rubio attacked President Obama for visiting a mosque this week, apparently forgetting that George W. Bush did the same thing.
- Fox News host Heather Nauert wondered if Clinton’s presidential campaign is just “bra burning.”
- This is getting sad. Jeb Bush is now reduced to begging audiences “Please clap” at his campaign events.
- A grand jury has indicted Ammon Bundy and 15 other Oregon “militiamen” for interfering with federal workers at the wild life refuge where they holed up for nearly a month.
- Now it looks like Congress will also stick the Bundy militants with the $3.4 million bill for their little stunt.
- Conspiracy theorist Alex Jones said that liberal women seek out “very Sharia-law” Muslim men to “slap them around.”
- Fox news guest Crystal Wright said that Republicans shouldn’t bother with black voters because of their “slavish” devotion to Democrats.
- Sarah Palin lost it when “Today” show anchors asked her to explain why she blamed President Obama for her son’s arrest.
- In an interview with radio hosts Jan Markell and Eric Barger, former Rep. Michele Bachmann said that President Obama will reveal himself as the anti-christ and seek global domination as the battle of Armageddon approaches.
- Harlem “hate” pastor James David Manning blasted “sodomites” and “fags” for causing his church to go bankrupt. The ATLAH World Missionary Church is deeply in debt, and will be sold at auction. Gay organizations are working to buy the building.