As I begin writing this (4:13 am ET) Ted Cruz is still talking. He's just finished recounting a story about his Cuban-born Daddy's travails upon arriving in Texas. He's probably riffed something similar dozens of times in the course of this oratorical tour de force. Now he's begun quoting excerpts from "Atlas Shrugged."
Listening to the timbre of his voice, he doesn't sound gassed. And his wingman, Utah's Mike Lee, is still there, able to give him an occasional breather by "asking a question." He'll probably still be going strong when Mika and Scarborough--who has hammered Cruz at every opportunity--fire up "Morning Joe." That alone is enough reason for me to maybe tune in to that trainwreck for the first time in years. (UPDATE-6:00AM: Took a look; still a trainwreck. Shmoe needs a swift kick in the nutsack.)
The Beltway Establishment has done their damnedest to paint Cruz's gambit as a fool's errand; meaningless theatrical grandstanding by an arrogant junior Senator with his eyes focused on a 2016 GOP Presidential primary prize. According to the typically gutless anonymous sources--who Cruz slapped in the face earlier in this escapade--that, too, is a fool's errand:
According to several Republican sources, most of whom declined to disparage a rising star on the record, the party’s donor class is rolling its eyes at Cruz’s last-minute, long-shot attempt to keep the controversial health care law from fully going into effect — dismissing it as unintelligible parliamentary trickery at best, and counterproductive self-promotion at worst.
Cruz, who most Republicans believe is positioning himself for a 2016 presidential run, will need the support of at least a portion of the party’s moneyed donors to stay competitive in a primary. But skeptics say he’s running the risk of being seen as unserious by the same people he will need to write him checks in a couple of years.
“Sure, he’s revving up the base, but so did Michele Bachmann and Pat Buchanan,” said one longtime Republican strategist who has worked on multiple state and national campaigns. “If you’re serious about running for president… you need the serious money, more than the direct mail crowd and the small money donors.”
“That,” the Republican said, “is the difference between winning the Iowa Caucus and winning in a serious state like Florida.”
That sounds like it's coming from someone in the Steve Schmidt wing of the Stupid Party's DC infrastructure. Schmidt, like his doomed 2008 Presidential candidate, sneers at the likes of a Ted Cruz in the same way he ran to MSNBC to pillory Sarah Palin after blowing his shot at becoming the Stupid Party's next 'Turd Blossom.'
Karl Rove is another of the Beltway GOP Establishment who looks down his nose at Cruz, Lee, Rand Paul and others as uppity young punks who don't understand how the Beltway Game is played. He's considered a prime suspect in the despicable dumping of opposition research on Cruz by Republicans into Chris Wallace's lap before he interviewed Cruz last Sunday. While the Stupid Party's "leadership" makes their collective disdain for Cruz and his cohort of Tea Party-powered populists obvious, they don't really get what's going on here....
This is just as much--maybe more--about putting a stop to them as it is putting a stop to Obamacare. Cruz has been hammering away at Republicans who ignore their constituents' wishes as much as he's been hammering away at the disaster that is the Unicorn King's sole "accomplishment" and Dingy Harry's iron-fisted control of how the Senate does its business.
He's calling them out, and people like me are cheering.
(6:08am EST): Hey, Rubio's back! (You better pay penance, you 'Gang of Eight' ingrate.)
After the Tea Party fueled wave of 2010 handed the GOP the House and wreaked havoc on Democrat political fortunes across the country, the DC Stupid Party looked that gift horse in the mouth. They passed bill after bill after bill in the House to kill Obamacare, yet allowed them to die in a drawer of Harry Reid's desk without putting up anything remotely like the fight Cruz is now waging against that monstrosity. As the Unicorn King continually thumbed his nose at the Constitution, picking and choosing what laws he'd uphold and which he'd ignore (like his Executive Ordered 'Dream Act'), they shrugged their shoulders.
Instead of building on that base of passionate voters who were sick and tired of the same old Beltway politics, in 2012 they picked the millionaire milquetoast, "Mittens" Romney, as their Presidential standard-bearer because, like Sen. McGrampypants in 2008 (who, despite the assertions of dipshits like Steve Schmidt, would have been obliterated without having Sarah Palin on the ticket), the Stupid Party Establishment deigned Mittens had earned "his turn."
With yet another debt crisis facing the country, they fret that shutting down the Federal government might damage their fortunes in the 2014 mid-term elections, and are ready to blame it on "Wacko Birds" like Ted Cruz.
What the hearties in the House are doing -- and what Ted Cruz is doing -- is signaling to the discontented that there really is another way. They can vote Republican in 2014; and, if they do so big time, there will be a correction of course.
The leadership of the Republican Party hates this. Like Jeb Bush in early 2009, they want "to get beyond Reagan." They want to surrender on immigration; they have designed a Republican healthcare bill that is little more than Romneycare writ large; and they desperately want to make nice with the Democrats. They do not really want a change of course. They merely want to take their turn as managers of the administrative entitlements state. They want to take advantage of discontent without having to commit themselves to a reduction in the size and scope of the government.
If they hate Ted Cruz -- if behind the scenes they are feeding the media attacks on him -- it is because he is threatening to throw a monkey wrench into the works. They hated the Tea Party. Initially, in 2009, they tried to dismiss it and get on with the process of surrendering to the Democrats on the healthcare question; and then, in August 2009, all hell broke loose in the town meetings, and Charles Grassley and the rest of them found that they had to back off. The Republican tide of 2010 kept them cornered, but the Tea Party folks did not have a plausible candidate to run for the nomination in 2012 and the whole thing subsided. Now the regulars are once again fully in charge -- and along comes this maniac Cruz who threatens to revive the fervor of the Tea Party and force the Republicans to move in the direction of smaller government.
The Stupid Party elites may not know it, but what Ted Cruz and his cohort are doing is reigniting that grassroots energy, and 2014 may be an even bigger wave than 2010....
And we're coming for you Stupid Party SOBs, too.
- Ted Cruz Control: He's No Pariah in Peoria (hispanicbusiness.com)
- What's Ted Cruz's deal? (cnn.com)
- Drudge Pronounces Cruz, Paul 'Heart' of Republican Party (breitbart.com)
- How Ted Cruz Wins By Losing (swampland.time.com)