In case you missed it, Ted Cruz called it quits last night. I’m obviously no political expert, but I would guess this clears Donald Trump’s path to the Republican nomination – unless something weird happens. And weird has been one of the key aspects of this presidential campaign cycle.
If this is it for Cruz in 2016, I don’t think this is the last we’ll see of him. I would say his voice will probably be heard often during the next few years and I’d be really surprised if he didn’t run again in ’20.
I have to say, though, that I never really thought much of Cruz as a candidate. I should be the kind of voter that lines up right behind him and joins him in the “fight,” but there was just something about him that turned me seriously “off.” One great example of his off-putting nature came this week:
“I believe in the people of the Hoosier state. I believe that the men and women gathered here and the goodness of the American people, that we will not give into evil but we will remember who we are and we will stand for our values,” Cruz said at a rally in La Porte, Indiana.
While I do believe that there is “evil” in this world — there’s obviously lot’s of it — I think it’s a very bad campaign strategy to start coding other American people as either good or evil. With one long paragraph you’ve basically alienated about half of the people in your own political party and almost all of the opposition party. This strategy may win you a state, but I don’t think it will win the country.
Don’t get me wrong, I do believe that certain things should definitely be described as evil. For example, abortion is evil. It is wrong and I don’t believe in compromising on it. I believe the practice should be condemned and outlawed if possible. I believe that life starts at conception and I believe the unborn need to be protected. But there are people involved. People make mistakes. People often don’t understand what they are doing when they make mistakes and they need to corrected, but there needs to be some thought behind the correction. There are people involved.
In Cruz’s case, he comes across as “preachy” and I think that translates to “holier than thou” to the American people. And when you have folks like Kenneth Copeland saying stuff like, “I believe, with all my heart, that his son is called and anointed to be the next president of the United States,” — well, you just look plain ridiculous to most Americans. If we were in the Old Testament times, this prophet would be taken out and stoned.
I have no problem with my president being a devout, born-again follower of Jesus Christ. I want my president to be this kind of person. But just being a Christian isn’t the only qualifier for being president.
This presidential election cycle has been a dud. Out of the 20 or so people from both parties running for president, none one of them fires me up. I’m not going to vote on-purpose for a socialist. I’m not going to vote for a socialist-in-sheep’s clothing just because she would be the first woman president. And I wasn’t fired-up about the other 15 hacks that dropped out of the GOP race before Cruz.
So that basically leaves Donald Trump. How on earth did this guy get this far? I think it’s because he’s the most comfortable in his own skin of any of the 20 or candidates (with the possible exception of Bernie Sanders). That basically means he can say what he thinks without worry of the repercussions. Yes, he’s stepped in it time and time and time again, but at the end of the day, he’s saying what people on their couches have been begging their candidates to say for the last 24 years.
Will it work in the general election? Right now the polls say it won’t, but as they say, “this ain’t a math test.”