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  • Cruz, Pence

    Posted by Lexington Green on July 21st, 2016 (All posts by )

    Rockefeller and Romney, rising stars, refused to back the doomed Goldwater bid in 1964. They ended their careers by trying to save them, by disloyalty. Two guys who fought for the team in 1964, knowing it was doomed, earned the respect of the party faithful and each went on to dominate the party and be elected and reelected in 49 state landslides — Nixon and Reagan. There is a right and a wrong way to play it when there are intra-party differences. You respect the voters and you respect the process, you fight for yourself in the primaries, and when you lose you fight for the team, you take the hit for the team, and your teammates remember your loyalty and reward it. Ted Cruz is a fool, who apparently thinks he can help Hillary win, then be in position to win in 2020. But he has shown brutal disloyalty, and even violated an express, public pledge to back the nominee. He can never be trusted again. He has, I hope, destroyed his political future. I liked Ted, if he won I would have supported him. But there is no going back from this decision.

    More importantly, Mike Pence gave a very good, solid, appealing speech. He managed to turn the Trump message into a more mainstream Conservative message, which is not really that hard. Well-played by Pence. He has set the foundation for a successful future, however this campaign ends up.

    UPDATE:

    This is what Ted should have said:

    I took a pledge to support the party’s nominee.

    I will keep that pledge.

    I would be lying to you if I said this is easy.

    My race against Donald Trump became personal, and ugly, and painful, in ways I won’t repeat tonight.

    Many people who supported me, people close to me, people I love, cannot forgive him.

    And I understand that.

    But there is too much at stake to dwell on the past.

    The race is over, it’s in the history books now.

    And the history of America’s future is unwritten.

    It is up to us to write it, together.

    What we need to do as a party is come together, and find the conservative values we do share.

    What we need to do as a party is come together, no matter how bitter the race was, no matter how much we may disagree, no matter what personal animosities we may still feel, and defeat Hillary Clinton.

    So, my fellow Americans, my fellow Republicans, tonight I keep my pledge, and I endore my party’s nominee for President, Donald J. Trump.

     

    46 Responses to “Cruz, Pence”

    1. Mike K Says:

      Cruz has been on an ego driven ride since he was first elected. He has alienated the GOP leadership, which is a venial sin at worst, but he has acted as a publicity hog and created a shutdown that served no purpose but self aggrandizement.

      He could have been a hero by joining Trump and been a possible successor, He could have been neutral like several others and kept his mouth shut.

      Instead, he used the code words of “vote your conscience” used by the NeverTrump rebels Monday and stood there with a smile as the Democrats wrote down every word.

      I think he has poor judgement or is being led by someone else with promises. Maybe Heidi knows why.

    2. DirtyJobsGuy Says:

      So our dear leader bollixes up NATO and Pence has to attempt to dig him out. And for the team you are supposed to pretend this is not a total disaster? Remember this is Trump doing it to himself, wait until the Dems start firing with both barrels. My Democratic and Independent friends do not like Hillary but they hate Trump. Why not vote for someone with some measure of integrity? The only time I’ve voted Democratic in my life was for Joe Lieberman when he ran as an Independent for Senator. He supported our foreign policy (not so Donald or so he claims) and it was not an issue for me and for most Republicans. I’ll be voting Libertarian this year so I can at least vote for fiscal sanity and smaller government.

      Honor counts in this world still.

    3. JohninKC Says:

      I think Cruz squandered an enormous opportunity for himself, his party and his country. Little Marco is now big Marco and Bush, Kasich, Graham and now,sadly, Cruz are all damaged goods. There are chances for redemption that crop up in politics from time to time but it is doubtful that another one like last night will be coming Cruz’s way anytime soon.

    4. Bill Brandt Says:

      If Cruz had made that speech, he would have had the respect of many, including me. We all know how personal and ugly it got. If for once the CA primary had some relevance (it rarely does being held in June) – I was down to voting for Cruz or Kasich. But since Trump was a fait acompli , I voted for him – logic being support the presumed nominee.

      As it is, what Cruz did last night reaffirmed what I have heard whispered all through the campaign.

      He is intensely disliked in the Senate for his always putting himself above the broader goals of his party.

      He just affirmed that for me, and any thoughts I had for supporting him in the future dissolved last night.

      BTW Kasich to me hasn’t fared much better – Laura Ingraham had great comment about those “stay at home” sore losers…

      If Trump wins he will owe them nothing….

    5. dearieme Says:

      “Honor counts in this world still”: except at the FBI, obviously. Or among the Democrats: how could they nominate the corrupt, crooked, lying, treacherous, warmongering she-wolf?

      Even the absurd mountebank is preferable.

    6. Bill Brandt Says:

      By the way it is tempting to compare this convention to 1964. But I remember that convention well. It was my first awakening to politics. I remember the enmity and bitterness within the Republican Party between the Rockefeller wing and the Goldwater wing.

      I actually became a precinct worker at age 14 knocking on doors. Because of the split half of the party wouldn’t talk to the other half.

      I did get more than one door slammed in my face. But I have to smile when I look back on that because most of the things Goldwater said turned out to be true. Like not going into Vietnam unless you intend to win it.

      The main difference between this year and 1964 is that Trump is bringing in new people. You might call them the Reagan Democrats —people who the party has ignored for quite some time now. So I wouldn’t write Mr. Trump off.

    7. Tyouth Says:

      Lex, it’s painfully clear to me that a version of your speech is what Cruz should have said. It’s tragic that a talented man motivated (it seemed to me) largely by love of the constitution and the rule of law could not get beyond personal slights and insults for the greater good of the country, not to mention the future of his own career. It’s hard to believe that no one in the RNC could get to him and talk hard sense in order to make him see the light.

    8. Mike K Says:

      “And for the team you are supposed to pretend this is not a total disaster? ”

      What was a disaster? Cruz indulging himself, as usual ?

      I was not a Trump fan early on. I was interested, however, in where he came from.

      The difference may lie as the examples of the “Market State” and “The Nation State.”

      Also known as “The Principle Agent Problem.”

      A nation state is a state defined by sovereignty within territorial borders, the defense of those borders by means of deterrence or retaliation for violation of them, and a public policy of large-scale social security for the population within those borders.

      On the other hand:

      A market state, by comparison, is defined by constitutional, economic and strategic adaptation to a world in which the claims of human rights, the reach of weapons of mass destruction, the proliferation of transnational threats to security and well-being, and the emergence of global capital markets that ignore borders, curtailing the power of states to control their own economies; while the development of telecommunications networks that likewise ignore borders, serves to undermine national languages, customs, cultures and regimes.

      Trump is the agent of Nation States.

      why did the State fail to transition into the Market State? The key fallacy may lie in his belief that the market state would work to “maximize its citizens’ opportunities.” This belief rests on the unsupported assumption that such State would continue to act as the faithful agent of its citizens. Yet once a State has been relieved of what Paul Monk called the duty to maintain “sovereignty within territorial borders … and a public policy of large-scale social security for the population within those borders” it acquires a rival claim to its services: the World.

      “World leaders” no longer work only for their own countries, but for the World.

      There is the explanation of Trump, I believe.

    9. Xennady Says:

      It seems to me that Cruz- and likely the Bushes and others as well- are operating under the facile assumption that Trump is going to lose the election and disappear, leaving Trump supporters confused and befuddled, willing to be herded back into the GOP plantation as if the sordid events of 2016 never even happened.

      In other words, the GOP braintrust is displaying the same sort of genius that led them to defeat by people such as the ethically challenged draft-dodging governor of Arkansas and a part-term senator from Illinois with no accomplishments.

      As the saying goes, you can’t fix stupid. But you can vote against it. Plainly, the GOP electorate has figured that out. Hence, I also believe that Cruz has torpedoed his political future, perhaps leaving it dead in the water and sinking.

      Trump supporters- from Donald on down- have no reason ever to support him, or think well of him, ever again, after what I can only conclude was a deliberate attempt to sabotage Trump’s campaign. Other Republicans, who may not like Trump one bit, but who support him out of loyalty to the party and because they want the GOP to succeed, have now seen personally why other Senators don’t like Cruz. And the Bush faction, who love what Cruz did, are irrelevant.

      Cruz has to run for re-election in 2018. I wonder what the odds are that a Trump-backed primary challenger will appear, and how well Cruz would do in such a contest. I obviously don’t know, but I doubt Cruz did himself any good last night.

    10. Mike K Says:

      I don’t think Trump need concern himself with Cruz after this.

      If he loses the election, he will retreat to his New York businesses.

      If he wins, which I think likely, he will have much more important things to think about than Cruz.

      I see this as 1856. Cruz is Fremont. Blowhard.

      I’m reading the new biography of Sherman and it is excellent.

    11. fromMaggiesFarm Says:

      Came across this post on Maggies Farm blog. For just a second I saw myself in the mirror and realized that I am a bit of a delinquent, myself. Heretofor, I blamed my obdurateness on being a Mick.


      One of the reasons that Americans still like reading Huckleberry Finn is that the American identity – at least a part of it – IS Huck Finn.

      In some corner of nearly every American’s soul is a wild-ling that chafes under the watchful eye of the Widow Douglas and her spinster sister Miss Watson. No matter how relentless the corrective barrage – sit up straight, speak properly, don’t scratch at the itchy clothes, and definitely don’t voice any untoward ideas – they cannot bring themselves to like the idea of being “sivilized” by meddlesome scolds who ultimately do not comprehend who they are or where they come from.

      Nor can they, as shown in this excerpt, ever completely overlook the hypocrisy inherent in these efforts:
      QUOTE:
      Pretty soon I wanted to smoke, and asked the widow to let me. But she wouldn’t. She said it was a mean practice and wasn’t clean, and I must try to not do it any more. That is just the way with some people. They get down on a thing when they don’t know nothing about it. . . And she took snuff, too; of course that was all right, because she done it herself.

      Even though they seldom act on it, most Americans, like Huck, consider the “regular and decent” world of the Widow Douglas’s parlor to be somewhat “dismal,” and there are times when they’d like nothing more than to “light out” and get away from all of the self-appointed moral betters who never cease filling the world with more (and more diabolical) parlors in which to constrain their behavior and – if it were possible – their very thoughts.

      Whether he turns out to be telling the truth or not, Donald Trump’s message is touching a nerve with the “inner Huck Finn” of many Americans. He is no doubt helped by the fact that the entire progressive left are nothing if not meddlesome scolds.

      Granted, that part of Americans’ inner-selves that tries to be upstanding citizens might struggle with the idea of a Huck Finn presidency. I mean, who puts an unrefined delinquent in charge? It just isn’t done.

      These doubts are bolstered by the establishment’s many Tom Sawyers who constantly come around with new empty promises – if only we’ll “go back to the widow and be respectable.”

      But the part of us Americans that remembers what life was like outside of the Widow Douglas’s parlor – and has watched the entrenched elites guard the parlor door ever more tightly these last eight years – shivers at the thought of the alternative. Indeed, it is hard to imagine a more dismal prospect than sitting in the parlor under Hillary’s watchful eye.”

    12. Mrs. Davis Says:

      Well played by Pence. Hanover/Indiana clearly did a better job than Princeton/Harvard.

    13. Subotai Bahadur Says:

      This topic came up elsewhere, less than an hour ago. Out of sheer laziness, I will just quote what I said there:

      1) He did not have to come to the convention at all. Not all of the 16 primary candidates did.
      2) He did not have to say nice things about Donald Trump, and if he had not, no one would have faulted him. All he would have had to do is emphasize that it is necessary for the survival of the country and Constitution that Hillary be defeated.
      3) Immediately after his speech, his campaign sent out a fundraising email for himself to Republican activists. This was long planned.
      4) The use of the phrase “Vote your conscience” has meaning beyond the mere words. From the beginning of the original #StopTrump movement, and into the #NeverTrump movement, they have consistently used “Vote your conscience” to mean to vote 3rd Party or to not vote for president. Functionally, he has called on his supporters to de facto support the election of Hillary.
      5) On a narrower scope, he infuriated me. He used the 9 year old daughter of a murdered police officer as a campaign prop. I retired after 28 years as a Commissioned Peace Officer of the State of Colorado. I’ve had to explain to my brother, sister-in-law, and stepmother [who were raised in the old country, I was born and raised here] why I kiss my wife every time I leave. Kissing like that is definitely not a Chinese custom. I had to tell them, that every time I left for work, there was a chance I would never come home.

      That is something that every cop understands. I agree with the opinion that Sheldon Adelson expressed to Cruz after the speech.

      I have to respectfully differ with Mike K. on one point. I think we are closer to the 4th Generation equivalent of 1860.

    14. Sgt. Mom Says:

      Not certain what to say, really – not having any personal connection to either man, save what I read in various fora — such as this one here.
      But I can’t really fault Cruz for not being able to swallow what The Donald said about him, his wife and his family, not being able to be a good sport and accepting that politics is not beanball. I get that – smear my family on a national stage? Yeah, my own resentment would be deep and everlasting.
      The Donald is a guy who — I surmise — shoots from the lip. Part of his charm and effectiveness, actually. But in savaging Ted Cruz’s family – he went just that inch too far. He would have gained a lot with a handsome apology and acknowledgement that he spoke hastily and in the heat of the moment. Alas, that is not his style, or so appears at this date. Pity – he would have gotten a good ally, if he had only swallowed his pride and made an effort.

    15. Mike K Says:

      On another Trump unpolitic comment a few months ago. I was just reading the history of General William F Dean, who was captured early in the Korean War and endured three years of POW captivity.

      Upon learning that he had been awarded the Medal of Honor, Dean reacted with great dismay. While humbly grateful for the award, Dean felt he did not really deserve it. Upon meeting with reporters, Dean, in his typical self-deprecating style, stated that “I’m no hero. Anybody dumb enough to get captured doesn’t deserve to be a hero.”

      The 1856-1860 matter is worth thinking about. The 1856 election saw the end of the Whigs as a party. Henry Clay had died and the Democrats nominated Buchanan.

      The “American Party, which was made up partly of Know-Nothings, nominated Fillmore and Fremont was the third party candidate of the new Republican Party.

      Buchanan warned that the Republicans were extremists whose victory would lead to civil war. The Democrats endorsed popular sovereignty as the method to determine slavery’s legality for newly admitted states. Buchanan won a plurality of the popular vote, but a majority of the electoral, and defeated Fillmore and Frémont, with the latter receiving fewer than 1200 popular votes in the slave states, with all of these coming from upper ones.

      Fillmore had been president and the American Party was anti-immigration and accused of being antiCatholic, the “racism” of the time.

      Fremont was a blowhard who exaggerated his accomplishments in California. Fillmore had been Taylor’s VP and became president on Taylor’s death.

      There was no Whig Party but Fillmore had been the last Whig president.

    16. Grurray Says:

      Thiel just provided a measure of uplifting unity. Good speech that deserved applause.

      Regarding NATO, Trump said he would support the nation’s that pay their fair share. That has been mandated to be 2% of GDP. There are five countries that meet that target: us, Poland, Britain, Estonia, and Greece. These are the countries that uphold their responsibilities in the alliance. These are the countries that have earned the support of the rest of NATO. The other countries that don’t fulfill their obligations should be called out and held accountable, and this is what Trump is doing.

    17. LastRedoubt Says:

      OK

      I know a lot of people like Cruz, and FWIW, “on paper”, he has those “conservative values”.

      I haven’t tracked his history in the senate, and heard various stories both pro and con regarding his time in the senate.

      THAT said, and leaving aside people I know who’ve met him, and who’s judgement I trust on matters of sociopaths and “dead eyes”, purely on what I have observed.

      He came to my attention in futile “here I stand” gestures in the senate that never managed to really stop anything, much less gain anything conservative. He may have fought, but his strategy, timing, and tactics sucked.

      Curiously, for a supposed conservative, two of his attacks on Trump came from a very leftist frame. You’d think an honorable and capable man would at least understand and respect an opponents strengths as well as his weaknesses. But Cruz blamed Trump for the violence caused at his rallies by Berniebots, La Raza supporters, and BLM supporters.

      Cruz also jumped on the the Michelle Fields thing right away in a true Anita Sarkeesian “Listen and believe” mode, worthy of L&O:SVU.

      THAT was when I lost respect for him.

      This last bit? In perfect line with the “me, me, me” attitude ascribed by critics.

      He could have refused to go up, and no-one would have kept a grudge, and what little hay the left would have made would not have gained traction.

      He could have lent support or shut up, and then staked out his position after the election.

      He could have made the speech you suggested.

      But no, he had to follow, as his fans have said, his principles, his honor, etc.

      What is so honorable about breaking your word?

      If you want to say he went all “47 Ronin” and violated his oath to choose the higher principle, then he also should take the consequences of breaking his word. In the movie, they violated their oath to obey their lord to follow their principles, and task complete, willingly suffered the consequences of violating that oath, committing suicide.

      No, making up for his betrayal of his word should not be so extreme, but it IS a betrayal, his word cannot be trusted any further than his convenience, and he needs to work very hard to make amends.

    18. ErisGuy Says:

      You must praise, recommend, endorse, and vote for whomever the party nominates, comrade, otherwise you are a wrecker and traitor.

      If only I hadn’t packed my library away I could quote Orwell and a few Old Bolsheviks on the necessity for party unity.

    19. LastRedoubt Says:

      Eris – you’re twisting words. That’s a pretty nice strawman you’ve built out of them.

      He made a pledge. He could have kept the letter of it by keeping his mouth shut, and then pushed for his positions. He instead took an offer to go onstage, and broke that pledge, and the spirit of the invitation he accepted.

      He did not have to accept the invitation.

      He could have kept his word AND his principles by simply not showing up.

      So stop with the B.S. There was no requirement Cruz violate his “principles” that he’s fought so ineffectually for.

    20. Ginny Says:

      I suppose my feelings are like many who were appalled by Trump. I liked his daughter, his speech. I’m not real crazy about the emphasis on “law and order” but considering Obama’s demoralizing and amoralizing and, well, racist effect, it may be a necessary counter.

      That is how everything goes – for the last few weeks whenever I have been critical of Trump, I’ve thought how his is a position better than either Hillary’s or Obama’s. Wasn’t it Ryan who said of course he was for Trump – he saw only a binary choice and it wasn’t a contest.

      The Clintons and Obamas have so lowered our standards that Trump exceeds them. And there’s no use in cursing the lowered standards, that’s where we are. I figure sometimes Trump was a conman but he earned his money fighting it out in the open market, with some interesting entrepreneurial ideas; she’s gotten rich off us – taken money from us, from Haiti, from God knows who for God knows what reasons. Greed for power and greed for money of the kind we see in the Clinton’s is almost beyond belief – we are reminded of the billions Chavez’s daughter has stashed away and the 10000 bedroom castle Erdogan paid for with the sweat of his subject Turks. Bargains that enrich the Clintons and give access (and often guns, etc.) to the Russians and the Iranians surely is even worse than the usual banana republic graft.

      Oh, well, I’m ranting. But I’m coming around to Trump. There really isn’t a choice. And if Cruz had the sense God gave him and truly valued this country, that would be obvious to him, as well. Of course Trump treated him shabbily, but the Clintons have done a lot worse to their opponents. And I’d hoped he’d have a job where his prickliness might have been smoothed, say by the example of the reasoned arguments of Clarence Thomas, etc. – he has talents that are likely going to be wasted now.

    21. Bill Brandt Says:

      The Clintons and Obamas have so lowered our standards that Trump exceeds them

      Good point Ginny.

      If it helps Trump be more palatable, consider the analogy Dennis Prager gives. “You have 2 doors – but you can open only 1. Door #1 says “Man Eating Tiger. Door #2 says “May be Man Eating Tiger but also may be beautiful princess”.

      So which door do you open?

      My mother and I have this argument – well, not an argument. She says she will vote for the libertarian to which I say is a wasted vote.

      As far as Trump is concerned with the 3-4 upcoming Supreme Court Justices it is a no brainer for me. Trump may very well disappoint but we know what we will get with the hildebeast.

    22. ErisGuy Says:

      Good thing I’m not a Republican.

      “Strawmen.” That’s a good metaphor for the men of GOPe and the Trump campaign. I should have brought more fire.

    23. TMLutas Says:

      Cruz pledged to support the nominee. He should be held to the same standard, and no higher, than the actual nominee. Both Trump and Cruz played a game of convenience with the pledge. Trump’s eventual victory does not change the fact that the bar he set is what it was. Moral standards are important and should not shift with the electoral fortunes of a particular campaign.

      Cruz’ speech was viewed and vetted by both the Trump camp and Trump personally. It was approved. Criticism of it without criticizing that vetting and that personal passing by Trump is inconsistent in my opinion and inappropriate.

      Cruz’ time in the Senate is about as appropriate to review as Pence’s time as governor. I’m voting for Johnson but still have a soft spot for the GOP in general which is why I’m not doing Hillary’s work for her. Suffice it to say that digging back into records on a thread is, again, something to be done for both or neither if what we’re doing is a fair review.

      Is this a two minute hate on Cruz?

      At least we haven’t descended into talk about JFK’s assassination and the relative beauty of Mrs. Cruz vs someone else. That puts us ahead of the GOP nominee.

    24. Mike K Says:

      Trump gave a very good speech last night although it was too long by about a half hour.

      His children have been very effective in making two points for him. They are intelligent and accomplished.

      Some of that reflects his influence when far from the spotlight. No drug over doses as is so common among celebrities and including Carly.

      The primary campaign is over. Time to move on which Cruz failed to do and that will hurt him badly.

    25. Grurray Says:

      “His children have been very effective in making two points for him. They are intelligent and accomplished.

      Some of that reflects his influence when far from the spotlight. No drug over doses as is so common among celebrities and including Carly.”

      There’s a huge epidemic of opiod abuse in this country. It’s a national catastrophe. The Facebook page support group for mothers has 50,000 members- https://www.facebook.com/addictsmom/?ref=br_rs

      I read awhile back that Trump’s strongest support comes from areas in the Midwest and Appalachia where death rates, including overdoses, are high. Maybe they’re all looking at his family and his kids and thinking that there’s some hope.

    26. David Foster Says:

      “If it helps Trump be more palatable, consider the analogy Dennis Prager gives. “You have 2 doors – but you can open only 1. Door #1 says “Man Eating Tiger. Door #2 says “May be Man Eating Tiger but also may be beautiful princess”.”

      There are still many people who believe they will be able to say ‘nice kitty’, and placate the tiger enough to keep it from eating them at some point over the next 4 years.

      And that the tiger will allow them to leave the room without attacking them.

      And that the *next* time they have a choice, at least one of the doors will say ‘Beautiful princess guaranteed”

    27. G Joubert Says:

      The Clintons and Obamas have so lowered our standards that Trump exceeds them.

      The Trump phenomena goes way beyond that, and its roots are really not with the Clintons and Obamas nearly as much as they are from within the Republican Party itself. The Boehners, McConnells, Lindsey Grahams, K Street, and the Chamber of Commerce. Those are what drove the Trump phenomena. Pay attention to who Trump surrounds himself with. His remarkable children, the Pences, the Sessions, the Giulianis. And what goes way beyond is Trump blows up so many conventions that he’s in the nature of disruptive innovation. This is going to continue to be a very fun ride.

    28. Anonymous Says:

      Well, I have a different take from most of the writers here on Cruz’s decision to support, but not endorse Trump. Yes, I said support. His role, I believe, was to the convince disaffected voters to participate in the election and to do so by testing the candidates as to most likely to support the Constitution. What that said to me is that I should vote for Trump because the Hildabeast is a non starter. If he had openly endorsed Trump, any encouragement that he tried to give the disaffected would have be ignored as he made a mockery of his earlier statements about Trump’s manifest short comings and he would have violated his personal fidelity to his family. I agree with Sgt. Mom on that point. Instead he highlighted the policy and issues where he and Trump agreed and which there in a couple of notable cases that are trashed by the Libertarian candidate. I took his appeal for voting one’s conscience as literal rather than some sort of code for elect Clinton.

      I believe it is telling that Trump never asked Cruz for an endorsement and Cruz told him that he would not do so. Trump knew what was going to be said and could have easily withdrawn his invitation. Perhaps he thought Cruz naming the important positions they share and admonishing the disaffected to participate based on conscience (not emotion) would be helpful. There is no such thing as any absolute pledge to support the party nominee when that individual refuses to apologize for such vicious personal attacks on one’s family. I personally support the withholding of an endorsement of Trump on that basis as a demonstration of high character.

      I could have suggested several modifications to his speech that would have perhaps made the point clearer. For example, the issue of the Supreme Court nominee(s). I am no politician, and never could be because I too would disappoint so many that want to criticize the political class for failing to be transparent and consistent to principles and then expect total subordination to the party nominee, whether Hillary or Donald. I understand choosing the lesser of two flawed candidates, but I don’t expect to be required to offer unqualified support to either of these characters. Perhaps Cruz should have declined Trump’s invitation and tried an alternate means to encourage the disaffected to participate. I believe he had no illusions about the probable person cost he would pay for not drinking the cool-aid. The possibility that he acted out of principle, not personal ambition, seems to be too much for most to consider. I’m willing to give him that credit. Some folks have a difficult time understanding the guy who jumps on the hand grenade in the middle of the group. Even fewer could or would do so.

      If Trump loses to the Hildabeast, it won’t be because of what Cruz said or does. It will because he will personally make himself the worst of two evils in too many minds. No small feat.

      Yes, Cruz will not likely ever be a serious candidate for president, but he may still do well in Texas. Time will tell.

      Death6

    29. Eric Says:

      Xennady:
      “And the Bush faction, who love what Cruz did, are irrelevant.”

      I’m sure it doesn’t help with the Bush faction that regarding President Bush’s decision for Operation Iraqi Freedom, Trump’s position is based on blatant legal and factual error.

      Of course, Jeb Bush only has himself to blame for that. JEB practically invited Trump’s exploitation of the Iraq controversy with JEB’s mortal strategic error of not vigorously re-litigating the issue for the public when provided the gift opportunity to correct prevailing misconceptions with Megyn Kelly’s 5/15 “knowing what we know now” hypothetical, despite that his brother’s decision for OIF was easily demonstrably correct on the law and facts.

    30. Bill Brandt Says:

      Of course, Jeb Bush only has himself to blame for that. JEB practically invited Trump’s exploitation of the Iraq controversy with JEB’s mortal strategic error of not vigorously re-litigating the issue for the public when provided the gift opportunity to correct prevailing misconceptions with Megyn Kelly’s 5/15 “knowing what we know now” hypothetical, despite that his brother’s decision for OIF was easily demonstrably correct on the law and facts.

      For me anyway this is when I lost respect for Jeb. But I also put a lot of blame on GW for not vigorously defending his administration more. Allowed Obama in with his “Bush lied” mantra.

    31. Eric Says:

      Bill Brandt:
      “For me anyway this is when I lost respect for Jeb. But I also put a lot of blame on GW for not vigorously defending his administration more. Allowed Obama in with his “Bush lied” mantra.”

      Obama and Trump have exploited the false narrative of OIF. Worse, President Obama made the false narrative of OIF a cornerstone premise of his foreign affairs and Trump appears set to pick up from Obama and do the same.

      JEB’s mortal strategic error sank his candidacy and the GOP. He apparently somehow failed to appreciate that more than any other event, the epochal Iraq intervention defined Republican leadership, American leadership, and American leadership under Republican presidency in the current era.

      JEB’s pathetic, craven pratfalls in front of the US public and the world while he attempted to squirm away from the controversy, rather than simply standing up for the mission to set the record straight on the why of OIF, and then his settling on conceding the mission was a “mistake”, were tantamount to a confession that effectively stipulated the false narrative of OIF. In doing so, JEB cornered his fellow GOP candidates into compounding his error. JEB validated the stigma cast over the mission, damned his brother and Bush officials, devalued the service and sacrifice of OIF veterans and the Iraqis, undermined strong-horse US leadership of the free world moving forward, and sabotaged his candidacy and the GOP.

      The head-shaking aspect of JEB’s error is that it contradicts his reputation as a policy wonk, given that Bush’s decision for OIF was a simple fact pattern. Setting the record straight on the why of OIF only requires a straightforward explanation of the set of readily understandable law, policy, precedent, and facts that controlled the decision for OIF. Knowing what we know now, the Bush administration’s case against Saddam was nearly entirely substantiated.

    32. Xennady Says:

      Of course, Jeb Bush only has himself to blame for that. JEB practically invited Trump’s exploitation of the Iraq controversy with JEB’s mortal strategic error of not vigorously re-litigating the issue for the public when provided the gift opportunity to correct prevailing misconceptions with Megyn Kelly’s 5/15 “knowing what we know now” hypothetical, despite that his brother’s decision for OIF was easily demonstrably correct on the law and facts.

      By the time Jeb! was asked to opine about Iraq War it was too late to convince the public that it was a good idea. That is the fault of George Bush. He displayed astonishingly poor judgement by refusing to defend himself and his actions against the lies of the left, at the time when it mattered. By leaving those charges essentially unanswered he allowed them to take root, regardless of the facts.

      I have a visceral loathing of Jeb!, for many reasons. But it seems to me quite wrong to blame him for not salvaging the public’s opinion of the Iraq War as a mere candidate, when his brother could not do so as president.

    33. Eric Says:

      Xennady:
      “I have a visceral loathing of Jeb!, for many reasons. But it seems to me quite wrong to blame him for not salvaging the public’s opinion of the Iraq War as a mere candidate, when his brother could not do so as president.”

      I agree and disagree.

      I agree with you that Bush and the GOP at large, especially when the Democrats adopted the same Russian narrative of the Iraq intervention that the Dems had countered under Clinton, should have vigorously and constantly reiterated and re-litigated for the public the legal-factual grounds for OIF as much as was needed to maintain the actual why of OIF in the political discourse. If they failed, at least they would have tried.

      Instead, although Bush established an informative law and policy, fact record of his decision for OIF, for the political discourse, it seems President Bush and too many GOP leaders, when faced with the challenge of the crashing waves of vitriol, copped out with the excuse that no matter the partisan politics, American leaders in office would invariably act responsibly with the Iraq intervention. After all, Clinton’s entire administration had been preoccupied by the Iraq intervention. Except, the false narrative of OIF enabled President Obama’s irresponsible, fundamental course deviation.

      I disagree with you in that the political attention for the 2016 presidential race provided the GOP with an opportunity to learn from their mistakes and take a 2nd bite at the apple. At minimum, JEB and the GOP needed to establish in the political discourse a coherent counter-narrative – ie, Bush’s OIF decision was correct on law and facts, the Surge set up a long-term track for Iraq to develop as a critical “strategic partner” (State Dept), and Obama’s deviation from Bush was catastrophic – to the prevailing yet demonstrably false narrative of OIF exploited by Obama and Trump. Instead, Jeb Bush applied his family name to effectively stipulating the false narrative of OIF.

    34. Eric Says:

      Oops, I left out a link. Fix:

      At minimum, JEB and the GOP needed to establish in the political discourse a coherent counter-narrative – ie, Bush’s OIF decision was correct on [the] law and facts, the Surge set up a long-term track for Iraq to develop as a critical “strategic partner” (State Dept), and Obama’s deviation from Bush was catastrophic – to the prevailing yet demonstrably false narrative of OIF exploited by Obama and Trump.

    35. Mike K Says:

      Well,the election is over. The social media has discovered that the Trump boys like hunting.

      That should fix Hillary once ad for all.

    36. PenGun Says:

      “Well,the election is over. The social media has discovered that the Trump boys like hunting.”

      That’s not hunting. That’s murdering animals you were led to. Animals I have far more respect for, than those yahoos.

      On the side: My newest interpretation of the kerfuffle in Turkey is that the US tried another regime change and that Erdogan had penetrated it. I’d move yer nukes.

    37. TMLutas Says:

      PenGun – The question has been for some time how long Turkey would remain a non-nuclear power if the nukes were removed. Would an indigenous set of nukes sit better with you? That being said, the kurds of Turkey are outbreeding, by far, the non-kurdish ethnics. The AKP has a limited window before they become a minority. If the US thinks it can sit tight until demographics yields them a better set of partners in Turkey, It’s a course of action that has to be considered.

    38. Xennady Says:

      My God.

      Whenever I think I’m too dumb to write anything on the internet, knowing that other people will be able to see it- I remind myself, at least I’m not PenGun.

    39. Mike K Says:

      “That’s murdering animals you were led to”

      No, that’s what happens in slaughter houses.

      Fools think meat comes from a plastic package.

    40. PenGun Says:

      I used to both haul from, and dump slaughterhouses. You don’t ever want to see what I’ve seen. What those idiots were doing was murder, not hunting.

      The evidence is mounting. We have the Russians warning the Turks that this was in play. We have Erdogan immediately grabbing and jailing a very large number of people, almost as if he knew just who to grab. It’s obviously an attempted coup, that failed, and he now has absolute power in Turkey. The only ones dumb enough to try to pull this off now is the good ol’ USA. Oh yeah, he has accused the US of this as well. He’d like your favorite CIA asset, Gulen, back as well.

    41. Mike K Says:

      PenGun the garbage man again.

    42. Joe Wooten Says:

      I used to both haul from, and dump slaughterhouses. You don’t ever want to see what I’ve seen

      Weak moron! I have slaughtered and butchered animals for food many times. The site of offal is not a problem for me or any other farm kid who knows where and how our food is grown.

    43. PenGun Says:

      “Weak moron! I have slaughtered and butchered animals for food many times. The site of offal is not a problem for me or any other farm kid who knows where and how our food is grown.”

      Not my food. I opted out of this madness over 50 years ago.

      I was simply pointing out to our dear troll Mike K that I don’t think meat comes in a plastic bag, I know better. I also don’t think being led to slaughter magnificent animals is hunting. It’s murder.

    44. Anonymous Says:

      I repudiate my earlier compliment on another thread about Penny saying something intelligent, it must have been a hack by someone else.

      Animals are delicious, they taste just like meat/food.

      Death6

    45. PenGun Says:

      “I repudiate my earlier compliment on another thread about Penny saying something intelligent, it must have been a hack by someone else.”

      You have a problem with vegetarians? Oh … what’s that … Death6, LOL.

    46. PenGun Says:

      “PenGun – The question has been for some time how long Turkey would remain a non-nuclear power if the nukes were removed. Would an indigenous set of nukes sit better with you? That being said, the kurds of Turkey are outbreeding, by far, the non-kurdish ethnics. The AKP has a limited window before they become a minority. If the US thinks it can sit tight until demographics yields them a better set of partners in Turkey, It’s a course of action that has to be considered.”

      That’s a fair question.; Not long, if it thinks it needs nukes.

      The problem now though, is that it’s not unlikely Turkey will leave NATO and back away from the EU. After Kerry’s equivocation it looks very much like the US was at least on the side of the coup, if not it’s actual author. This is what Erdogan is looking at, and it sounds very much like he thinks the US is not his friend. As Vladmir Putin warned him as it began, and as they are natural allies, the Russian Turkish game has changed a great deal. There are even, pretty good rumors, that Erdogan is talking to Asasad. As the bookie in Snatch said: “all bets are off”.