It is already setting in as received wisdom among liberals both within the Republican party and without that Ted Cruz will be made to shoulder the blame for the nominations the Democrats rammed through the Senate this week. A good example of that comes from the arbiter of objective fairness to conservative Republicans, the New York Times:
But most of the day was consumed with nominations, none more irritating to many Republicans than the ones who received a vote because of an impulsive move by one of their colleagues. And with the book now closed on the 113th Congress, they could go down as the Cruz Confirmations — the batch of the president’s nominees who were confirmed by the Senate only after Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), Republican of Texas, forced his colleagues to stay in session for 10 hours on a bleak December Saturday.
“No, we would not have had all of these 24 confirmations, and I think most people know that,” said Senator Orrin G. Hatch, Republican of Utah, referring to the two dozen nominees that Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV) of Nevada, the majority leader, forced votes once Mr. Cruz made his move.
The number one problem with believing this theory, as my colleague streiff pointed out yesterday, is that Harry Reid promised repeatedly and publicly before the Cruz-Lee point of order that he would keep the Senate open as long as necessary to confirm the nominations. So the whole notion that this idea came to him suddenly in a fit of rage over the Cruz-Lee point of order was invented out of whole cloth by people who didn’t want to miss their weekend pass home.
Nevertheless, it’s at least possible to believe that not withstanding Reid’s promises, the Republicans might have been able to run out the clock on the year. Fine, I was willing to suspend judgment on that point, until now. It turns out, the Senate wrapped up business late last night and have now gone home for the year.
So let’s do a little math. It’s a matter of historical fact that the Cruz-Lee point of order bought Reid ten hours worth of floor time on Saturday. Given that Reid was able to wrap up the session last night, what you would have to believe is that Reid would have let over two dozen important nominees just die for the sake of going home Tuesday instead of Wednesday or Thursday.
I suppose it is technically possible to believe that Reid had something back home in Searchlight today that was so important that he would have allowed that to happen but I don’t think any objectively rational person who is willing to look at the facts instead of engage in ritualistic hate of Ted Cruz is buying that after today.
Again, I’m fine with criticizing Ted Cruz or just not liking him. But don’t try selling me that a) he’s an idiot or b) that he got these nominations pushed through. The math just doesn’t add up.