Ted Cruz Plays to Sheldon Adelson on Israel and Iran

Ted Cruz can agree with the Israeli government position without being so untruthful about the position of the Obama administration.  The sub-headline to this story reads,”The Texas senator says he believes the Obama administration thinks it is “perfectly acceptable” for Iran to acquire a nuclear weapon.”   Obama spoke to AIPAC in 2012 and said very clearly that preventing Iran from developing a nuclear weapon is a national security interest of both Israel and the United States and that has been his position ever since.  Cruz can disagree with Obama’s negotiation tactics without lying about Obama’s basic position.  Pandering to the base or sucking up to powerful potential donors is not a reason to flat out lie, so shame on Senator Cruz once more.

Click here to read the full story of March 2, 2015 from BloombergPolitics, which I quote in part below:

Senator Ted Cruz is unabashed about his support for Israel and his contempt for Iran, and Monday he made sure that mega-donor Sheldon Adelson knows it.

A day before Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu addresses a joint meeting of the U.S. Congress the Texas Republican was the only lawmaker to join Elie Wiesel, the Nobel Peace Prize-winning Holocaust survivor, in a Senate hearing room Monday for a panel discussion titled “The Meaning of Never Again: Guarding Against a Nuclear Iran.”

In the talk, which was moderated by American Orthodox Rabbi Shmuley Boteach, Cruz’s criticism of President Barack Obama was pointed and included a claim that the administration doesn’t really want to stop Iran from developing nuclear weapons.

The only “natural” consequence of Obama’s efforts to negotiate with Iran, “is that Iran will have a nuclear weapon,” said Cruz, as casino and hotel magnate Adelson, who is Jewish, looked on from the audience.

“Those who are leading this negotiation fundamentally don’t understand who it is they are negotiating with,” Cruz said. “I think their view is it’s perfectly acceptable for Iran to have nuclear weapons, and they will be part of the rational community of nations.”

Cruz controlled: On Ted’s CPAC setback

This is an extraordinarily interesting and intelligent analysis of CPAC (e.g. – the demographics of those who attended and voted in the straw poll), of Ted Cruz’s performance at CPAC  and of Cruz’s larger problems he must confront if he is to have any chance to be win the Republican nomination.  This is a must read for any fan of Ted Cruz.  Here are my two cents: Cruz must move beyond being an attention seeking bomb thrower and start presenting himself as more of a thoughtful statesman with realistic proposals for change.  Even the rabid GOP base knows in its heart that someone who proposes abolishing the IRS and sending its agents to patrol the Mexican border is going to get more laughs than votes in a general election with an electoral college already stacked against the Republicans.  Scott Walker who has done plenty (for better or worse) in Wisconsin pleased the conservatives and came across as much more presidential and likeable in his CPAC speech.

I really, really urge you to click here and read the full column by Jonathan Tilove of March 2, 2015 in The Austin American-Statesman, which is quoted in part below:

In the grand scheme of things, Cruz finishing third [in the CPAC straw poll] is not bad, considering that he’s been on the national scene for scarcely two years. But, then again, the same can be said for Rand Paul – though, as a past two-time winner of the straw poll and the son of CPAC favorite Ron Paul, also a past two-time winner, he had a huge leg up.

CPAC demographicsBut Scott Walker is also a relatively fresh face, and his ascension is a bigger problem for Cruz.

Simply put, Walker has in the last few weeks stolen a march on Cruz, and he used CPAC to consolidate his advantage over Cruz.

In his report card on the prospective candidates who spoke at CPAC, Bloomberg’s Mark Halperin gave Walker an A, Rand Paul an A-minus, and Cruz a B-plus.


On Cruz [Halperin wrote]:

Style: Signature toggle between hushed emotion and rallying shout that surfed the audience energy, punctuated by his “Cruz Stroll” around the stage with a wireless mic. Even as his Beltway tenure as a senator ticks by, he still pushes his anti-Washington, populist message without fear of contradiction or mockery. Biggest flaw: too often veered from happy warrior to angry warrior.

Overall: Nobody in the party today speaks with as much confidence and energy. Showed message discipline on his winning anti-DC schtick, but with so many lines familiar to the audience, some of the enthusiasm drained from the room as he delivered his spiel. He hasn’t worn out his welcome by any means with the CPACers, but he offered up no second act or sense of growth.”

I think this is a problem for Cruz right now. His story-line is stalled.

He presents himself as the Outsider Within Washington.

cruz at CPACIn his speech, Cruz likened himself to Uber and Lyft, the ride-sharing companies.

“What I am trying to do more than anything else is bring a disruptive app to politics,” Cruz said.

His theme is “Make D.C. Listen.”

But, like it or not, he is associated in the public mind with Washington, which Walker, in his speech, described as “68 square miles surrounded by reality.”

As I wrote in my story Sunday:

(Cruz) challenged Republican rivals to compare war wounds.

“We all know that in a campaign, every candidate comes up and tells you, ‘I’m the most conservative guy that’s ever lived,’ ” Cruz said. “Every one of them will say, ‘You betcha, hoo diddly, I’m as conservative as all get-out.’”

But, Cruz said, “If you’re really a conservative, you will have been in the trenches and you will bear the scars.”

Ed Morrissey, a conservative blogger and radio talk host from Minneapolis, said Walker more than meets that test.

“Ted Cruz said, ‘Show me where you’ve bled for the conservative agenda,’ ” Morrissey said. “Well, Scott Walker bled all over Wisconsin. He had to run for his first term twice because the unions came after him in a big way.”

As Rich Lowry at National Review wrote of Cruz’s CPAC appearance:

Oddly, the quotient of applause lines to applause seemed off. His jokes were clunky and he was a little shouty. But there is no doubt that people still love him for his role in the last government shutdown. One problem for his candidacy is that his show-me-what-you’ve done riff is a better setup for Scott Walker than for himself. It is a bit odd for a senator to say “Talk is cheap” when, unless they are master legislators, pretty much all that senators do is talk.

I think Halperin is also right that Cruz has to worry about coming across as an “angry warrior.”

“There is an edge to him, but maybe that will round out as the takes the campaign nationally,” Morrissey said.




Ted Cruz tosses red-meat to Duval [Florida] Republicans

Cruz energizes the true believers in Jeb Bush territory.

Click here to read the full February 20, 2015 article from The Naple News quoted in part below:

As he continues to the test the waters for a potential 2016 bid for the White House, U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas made his pitch Friday night to the Republican Party of Duval County, one of the state’s largest local parties.

Sprinkled throughout his remarks was a common theme that most potential GOP presidential nominees have focused on: Obamacare.

“In 2017, a Republican president in the White House will sign legislation repealing Obamacare,” he said.

Cruz has built a national reputation as a firebrand conservative not afraid to mix it up with the establishment in his own party. In 2013, he grabbed headlines by speaking for 21-hours on the Senate floor about the need to defund Obamacare, an act that endeared him to many of the party’s conservative activists.

The red-meat issues that dropped Cruz on the national radar were on full display as he gave a keynote speech to a packed ballroom at the Jacksonville Hyatt Regency.

“We should abolish the IRS,” Cruz said to a loud ovation.

Duval County is home base for many large GOP donors and a big swath of Republican voters, but it could be tough for any non-Florida candidate to wrest that support away from Jeb Bush or U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, both of whom are also considering presidential bids.

Will Ted Cruz rock the House at CPAC? Will CPAC Thin Or Expand The Republican Presidential Herd?

A Republican blogger predicts Cruz will do well next week at the CPAC cattle call of would-be GOP nominees next week.

Click here to read the story quoted in part below that was published February 19, 2015 at The Daily Caller.com.

Whether the Conservative Political Action Committee (CPAC) annual conference is relevant to the Republican Party and potential presidential candidates is debated each year.

For 2015 at least, the answer is a resounding “Yes.” CPAC’s conference next week could go a long way towards sorting out the trajectories of a growing field of likely Republican presidential candidates.

The list of serious potential presidential candidates speaking at CPAC has grown to include a wide cross-section, including Jeb Bush, Mike Huckabee, Rand Paul, Rick Perry, Scott Walker, Ted Cruz, Bobby Jindal, Chris Christie, Dr. Ben Carson, and Rick Santorum.


Here’s my assessment of where the candidates stand, and how CPAC appearances could help or hurt them:

Jeb Bush has big money and a big name, but is lacking in big enthusiasm among the non-donor activist class. The doubts about Jeb are manifold – soft or wobbly on immigration and Common Core, and perceived (rightly or wrongly) as a big government Republican in the mold of his brother, George W. Having been out of politics for the last decade, Jeb needs to introduce himself to a Republican electorate not necessarily enamored of the Bush name. CPAC could be Jeb’s conservative coming out.

Mike HuckabeeRick Santorum and Rick Perry have big name recognition, but have run before in campaigns that ended in failures that left them politically damaged goods. All will get good crowd receptions, but will it be their swan songs, or a new political beginning? I’m betting on the swans.

Ted Cruz will rock the house. No doubt about that. His appearance will be an 8.0 earthquake. But the rock star of the conservative movement needs to translate that enthusiasm into a perception of a credible national candidacy.

Love Affair Between Iowans, Ted Cruz Continues

Click to read the full, enthusiastic piece in National Review from Jan. 25, 2014.

The love affair between the Iowa voters and Ted Cruz is going strong.

The Texas senator, pacing across the stage at the Iowa Freedom Summit in a tan jacket and slacks, praised the state’s “unique and special role in the political process.” Iowa voters, he said, have a responsibility “to scrutinize every candidate for national office, to look them in the eyes and to hold them to account.”

The tea-party darling urged them to be discerning when presidential contenders begin streaming through the state vaunting their conservative credentials. It helps, of course, that nobody can out-conservative Ted Cruz.

“Every candidate is going to come in front of you and say I’m the most conservative guy who ever lived,” Cruz said. “Well gosh darnit, talk is cheap. One of the most important roles men and women of Iowa will play is to say, ‘Don’t talk, show me.’”

Cruz’s suggestion was that his stand against the Affordable Care Act, which resulted in a government shutdown a year ago and his refusal to compromise — in fact, even to make friends — in Washington on a range of issues have proven his mettle somebody worthy of their vote.

The senator went on to make calls that have become standard in his public remarks: He demanded the repeal of Obamacare, the abolition of the IRS, and the restoration of American leadership in the world.

“There are 110,000 employees at the IRS,” he said. “We need to padlock that building ad put every one of those 110,000 on our southern border. If you crossed border and the first thing you saw was thousands of IRS agents, you’d turn around and go home too.” The crowd whooped and cheered.

Cruz: Believe in the miracle of America

Click this link to read the full positive review of Ted Cruz at the 2015 Freedom Summit from the Des Moines Register.

U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas received enthusiastic applause at Saturday’s Iowa’s Freedom Summit, repeatedly invoking his belief in God and the U.S. Constitution and vowing to remain true to conservative principles.

He called for Republicans to reassemble the “Reagan coalition,” a group of conservatives, evangelicals, libertarians, and others who want to believe again in the miracle of America.

“Some might say, this is hard. This is really hard. The media tells us it can’t be done. … But you know each of us has seen miracles every day,” Cruz said.


HINTS AT PRESIDENTIAL BID: Cruz talked about reassembling the “Reagan coalition” to reclaim leadership of the nation. He also invoked the memory of former President Ronald Reagan in calling for Americans to “bring back that shining city on the hill that is the United States of America.”

AUDIENCE REACTION: He received some of the most enthusiastic applause and cheers for any prospective presidential candidate at Saturday’s event, and some in the crowd chanted “Ted, Ted, Ted” when he was introduced.