I'm old enough to remember the hand wringing. The GOP must reach out to libertarians, they said. Young people are too libertarian for the GOP, was the claim. When we at RedState banned Ron Paul supporters, we were told we were part of the problem, keeping the GOP from ever winning again, because Paul was reaching an 'untapped strain' of voter.
Well, here we are in 2016, and Ted Cruz has heard the complaints. He is winning over libertarians, seeking to expand the base to win the nomination and the election.
[caption id="attachment_260219" align="aligncenter" width="600"] Photo by Gage Skidmore on Flickr[/caption]
For Ted Cruz to win over Steve Hoffman, a director of the Republican Liberty Caucus, is notable. The RLC is not to be confused with a conservative organization: It puts Ron Paul alongside Ronald Reagan as one of their great heroes. This is a group that compares refusing to participate in homosexual 'marriages' with "a private lunch room that does not serve blacks". And this group loves conservative RedState.com hero Ted Cruz!
And Hoffman makes it clear Ted Cruz is the only guy who can win these voters, according to the Examiner:
"There's no doubt that the vast majority of Rand's supporters will come over to Cruz if Rand drops out at some point," Hoffman said. He said that at the RLC's recent national convention, "Paul and Cruz were nearly tied in our straw poll, with Rand being a few points ahead."
"So it's clear that within the RLC, Cruz and Paul stand out as the two acceptable candidates," he said.
This is successful outreach, folks. This is what it looks like when a candidate is willing to step beyond the reliable party base, to disaffected voters who are uncomfortable with today's conservative GOP. Those who say that Ted Cruz is only talking to the base, are ignoring this. Ted Cruz is doing outreach nobody else is doing.
This entirely aside from the outreach Ted Cruz is doing to Donald Trump supporters, who are being demonstrated time and again to include many Democrats. Ted Cruz simultaneously gets criticized for doing insufficient outreach outside the base, and for refusing to attack the Donald Trump movement. It doesn't make sense, and it's not meant to make sense. It's simply meant to cast fear, uncertainty, and doubt about Ted Cruz.
How many libertarians across the country ready to back Ted Cruz, are off the table with a Jeb Bush, Chris Christie, or John Kasich? That's outreach and base expansion in its purest form. Ted Cruz is doing it, and that's why he's doing so well in the polls lately. It's his only way to win, when you're as hated by the establishment as he is.