|A WORD (OR MAYBE 1,500) ABOUT THE CRUZ SPEECH 21 July 2016||| Print ||
A WORD (OR MAYBE 1,500) ABOUT THE CRUZ SPEECH
21 July 2016
Dear Friends and Patriots,
I assume you either watched or heard Ted Cruz last night. Wasn't that something? It was, wasn't it? But, what was it?
The media's talking heads are pretty much of one accord on this one. In their infinitely wise assessments they're fairly united in the opinion that Ted Cruz committed political suicide, or if he didn't he at least set himself up for it later this year. But, did he?
Ted was making a brilliant speech, right up to the end. It was the couple of sentences at the end that set off the firestorm. It was when he used the Never Trumper code words "Vote Your Conscience" that the crowd reacted like they'd been jolted with a cattle prod. Was that the reaction Ted expected? If not, why not?
I know I'm not on very solid ground in my analysis of this event, and may never be. The truth is, we may never know with absolute certainty why Ted Cruz chose to give the speech he did, when he did. But, after watching the man for a couple of years and hearing him speak many times on many subjects, I think I may understand. Maybe. Maybe not. But, I'm willing to add my two cents to the giant blustery babble of superheated air on this one. Maybe you can prove me wrong. I'm sure I can't prove myself right. But, I'll launch and let you be the judge.
Ted Cruz is a man without political fear. Hasn't everyone figured that out already? He does what he does because he believes his actions fit the set of principles he strives to live by. We all have to make compromises from time to time, but Ted Cruz is the last one to compromise on any point of principle. He's as iconoclastic in that regard as one can get. It's what makes him Ted Cruz. I'm of the opinion that he made the speech he did as a statement of principle. He's communicated many times that he believes Donald Trump is not a conservative and not a man who lives according to the same set of principles most conservatives profess to believe in. The whole "deal making" thing Trump always talks about is antithetical to Cruz's personal philosophy. What he did in his speech was to lay out a list of the nation's dilemmas in a format that made two essential considerations - those of liberty and freedom. Then he exhorted everyone who was tuned in to ensure they go to the polls on Election Day and vote. Lastly, he said all should vote their conscience, up and down the entire ballot.
It's true that he didn't give an endorsement of Donald Trump. Not doing so was a matter of principle, and he made his speech as a demonstration that he would not yield principle for the sake of expediency or party unity. He puts principles ahead of such things. Perhaps instead of railing on about how Ted is trying to wreck the Republican Party, we should dissect the practical application of voting one's conscience.
In this election the voters will see as many as a dozen names of candidates running for President. Some states may have as few as four. Let's just consider that four.
We'll see one candidate for the Green Party. The enviro-whackos may vote Green. Most people don’t even know the Green Party exists. I'm thinking no real Republican or conservative does, or will vote Green. So, Ted didn't throw any votes to the Greens, did he?
Moving up the list you have the Libertarian Party candidate, Gary Johnson. Johnson, who admits to being a lifelong dope smoker and who holds all kinds of views that aren't conservative. There are some Never Trumpers who've already stated they'll bolt the Republican Party and vote Libertarian. There are some Republicans who have shredded their party cards and signed up as newly minted Libertarian Party members. Does anyone think Ted Cruz had anything to do with that? Does anyone think his speech will start a stampede of RP members to the eager arms of the LP? Personally, I think not. In fact, I think there are a few Never Trumpers whose resolve to maintain their party unity at all costs will only be stiffened. The LP won't gain any votes as a result of that one speech. I just can't conceive of it happening. And, I know Ted Cruz isn’t voting LP.
Now, let's take a very brief look at the Democratic Party and their candidate. REALLY? Who's kidding whom here? No one who is a conservative or even just a person with a conscience will change their vote to the Democrats. Ted spoke of a conscience. How can anyone with a conscience vote for someone as tainted and corrupt as Hillary Clinton? It just won't happen. The very notion that Ted's speech could result in a single added vote in the "D" column is just silly.
That leaves us with the Republican Party candidate, Mr. Donald James Trump. It also leaves us with the fact that Ted Cruz pledged to support the party's nominee. But, it was a dumb pledge in so very many respects. It doesn't take a lawyer of Ted's caliber to understand that pledge isn't a contract, and isn't enforceable. Just what constitutes "support"? Is it the same as "endorse"? Maybe. I guess that depends on how you look at it. Did Kasich endorse Trump? Did Rand Paul? Marco Rubio didn't utter the "E" word in his speech (at least I didn't hear it) but he did encourage listeners to vote Trump. That was a tacit endorsement. Are tacit endorsements equal to "full" endorsements? Does Marco get full credit, or just partial? What about that Libertarian guy, Gary Johnson. Am I wrong, or did he not take that very same pledge, then bolt the party to run under a different banner? Everyone knows that pledge was a dumb mechanism to try to box Donald Trump in and hopefully get some ammo against him in case HE bolted the party and ran under a golden banner that just said TRUMP. The pledge wasn't intended to do anything to or for anyone else. We all knew it at the time, and most of us thought it was dumb. Now people are willing to trot it out as if it is holy writ and Ted Cruz is some kind of apostate for not putting a MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN tattoo on his forehead. But, I digress.
If a thinking person votes his conscience in this election, and assuming that person has some actual understanding of the Declaration of Independence, the U.S. Constitution, Natural Rights, and Natural Law, their choice is already made. They won't vote Green, the party of the enviro-whackos. There's just too little there to vote for. They may vote for the Libertarian Party candidate, but if so, they've already decided to do so. It won't be Ted Cruz or his words that will push them from the RP to the LP, and it won't be the hyperbolic media reaction that will do it, either. To vote LP you have to have already accommodated yourself to some positions that the average conservative just can't buy into. There's really no point in discussing the Democrats. Anyone who claims to be a Republican or conservative, yet would consider voting for Hillary for any reason at all is in bad need of a lobotomy, or perhaps recently had one. So, even if I'm to play the "lesser of evils" game when making my consideration, I still end up in only one place. That place is the Republican Party, voting for Donald J. Trump.
So, when you distill it down, what did Ted Cruz really do? Did he set himself up to fall? Did he position himself in an unlikely spot to say "I told you so!" the day after the election? Did he do one of those things, or did he give us an exhibition of what principle looks and sounds like? Did he remain true to his principles? When I dissect his statements, I find that he did. My dissection of the speech tells me it was something very difficult for the average voter to grasp. It was something so-called pundits misconstrue, either willfully or because they don't have the capacity for analytic though.
Because politics is a blood-sport I expect Ted Cruz to suffer for his speech. There will be hot debates for years over the meaning and the effects of it. It may play a role in the outcome of the election, but my own analysis and belief is that it most likely won't. Cruz will suffer because most won't have a clue of what he did or why. Too many will consider the speech a major back-stab at the party and the party nominee. Too many will consider it the act of a selfish egomaniac. Too many will fail to connect act and words to principle. That is my expectation. If it's not Ted Cruz's expectation, then I've misjudged him completely. I'm certain he understands the reaction of last night and today. I'm certain he's willing to pay whatever price he has to.
It's his way.
Now, I've had my say and will be quiet.