Everyone’s talking about Ted Cruz, the Senator from Texas who has been talking way too much outside of and within what may or may not be a filibuster. Space is limited, time is short. I won’t be arguing on what defines a filibuster here. Instead, I’d like to focus this post on Ted Cruz.
Who is Ted Cruz? I’m sure that you know as much or more about him than I do. He’s another tea party extremist, a self-serving opportunist, a jerk, take your pick. The Atlantic calls him “Sarah Palin with an Ivy League pedigree,” and explains:
Cruz’s main objective is not to take on Obama and the Democrats (that’s just a tactic), but to oust the old guard in his own party — even faster than the Tea Party insurgency sought to do after 2010…As The Washington Post noted on Monday, citing GOP senior aides and senators, Cruz is seeking to “purify the party.”
Cruz has caused so much mayhem that John McCain has called him a “wacko bird,” and Chris Wallace received opposition research on Cruz from Republican sources before a Cruz appearance on his show. It is believed that Karl Rove was the one who sent Wallace the information. Furthermore, The Atlantic reports, “Even former Republican House leaders who supported the Tea Party are aghast at the chaos Cruz and other new insurgents have caused…Former Gingrich Revolution stalwart Dick Armey says he feels bad about all the little Frankenstein monsters he created with his Tea Party-friendly FreedomWorks PAC.”
A Republican Senator intent on destroying today’s GOP? If you’re a Democrat, you gotta love Ted Cruz. First, the deep divisions that he’s causing within the Republican Party can only mean good news for the Dems. Second, he’s so intent in making a name for himself before the 2016 election, that he doesn’t realize that he’s already a politically dead man walking. He is not only exposing the untenable extremism of the tea party and its followers to the American voters, he is making an enemy of the Republican establishment without which he can’t be nominated, much less elected. Third, even if he succeeds in making the GOP implode, what will be left will be an extremist tea party whose candidates will never be able to win a Presidential election.
In another time, when our country had two legitimate political parties that worked with one another, I would have been furious, sad and worried about someone like Ted Cruz. I wouldn’t have wanted anyone so extreme to put in jeopardy the two-party system, one that has provided stability to our democratic processes for hundreds of years. It is a sign of the times that while I loathe everything that Cruz stands for, I look at his antics and feel glad for them.
In other words, I don’t love Ted Cruz, but I love what he’s doing.