Ted Cruz went ham on Mitch McConnell on Monday.
“Mitch would slightly be chief than have a Republican majority,” Cruz mentioned on his podcast. “If there’s a Republican who can win who’s not going to help Mitch, the reality of the matter is he’d slightly the Democrat win.”
Which, properly, whoa!
Cruz has additionally been a part of a small group of Republican senators pushing to delay management elections, scheduled to happen on Wednesday, till after the December 6 runoff in Georgia. On Tuesday, Cruz mentioned it will be “completely insane” to carry the management elections earlier than there was a postmortem of the midterm outcomes, which led to Democrats protecting management of the Senate.
“I consider we must always have a frontrunner that truly listens to the convention, and that’s keen to face and struggle, doesn’t roll over instantly,” Cruz mentioned. “Our present management believes the way in which you win elections is that you just don’t stand for something, you don’t have an agenda, you don’t have a plan. As a substitute, that the one factor you rise up and say is ‘Nicely, I’m not a Democrat. So vote for me.’ You recognize what? Election Day confirmed we should be extra than simply not a Democrat.”
Tips on how to clarify Cruz’s rhetoric about McConnell? Straightforward. It’s politics.
Cruz has made no secret of his political ambitions. He completed because the runner-up to Donald Trump within the 2016 Republican presidential major. Though he and Trump ended that race on acrimonious phrases – Trump falsely alleged that Cruz’s father may need been concerned within the assassination of John F. Kennedy and attacked his spouse – Cruz finally endorsed Trump and have become one of many former president’s most stalwart defenders within the Senate.
The lesson Cruz discovered in that evolving relationship with Trump is that the Republican base completely loves the previous president and has zero curiosity in a candidate who opposes him. (Whether or not that calculus has modified since a disappointing midterm election end result for Republicans stays to be seen.)
And so, Cruz has hewed as intently to Trump as potential over these previous few years – as he tries to make amends for the unwell will from the 2016 race.
While you see Cruz’s over-the-top response to the 2022 elections – and the quickness with which he blamed McConnell – by that Trump lens, issues begin to make extra sense.
Trump has been an unrelenting in his criticism – and bullying – of McConnell within the wake of the midterm elections.
“It’s Mitch McConnell’s fault,” Trump wrote in a submit on his Fact Social web site after Democrats secured management of the Senate. “He blew the midterms, and everybody despises him.”
And as CNN lately reported, Trump is pressuring his allies guilty McConnell, too:
“In cellphone calls with allies, elected officers and incoming members of Congress, the previous President has accused McConnell of spending recklessly in states the place Republicans confronted important headwinds on the expense of candidates in additional aggressive contests.”
Cruz, then, is just following Trump’s directions. He is aware of – as a result of he can depend – that nobody goes to beat McConnell within the election for Senate Republican chief. However that isn’t what actually issues to Cruz.
What does matter is virtue-signaling to the Trump base that he thinks McConnell has carried out a poor job – and that he’s offended about it.
It’s additionally price noting that the animosity between Cruz and McConnell is just not new. McConnell was brazenly pissed off when Cruz compelled a authorities shutdown in 2013 over then-President Barack Obama’s well being care regulation – a method that the GOP chief considered as completely egocentric and counter-productive to the get together’s broader efforts.
Trump is extensively anticipated to announce his third bid for president on Tuesday night time. It’s laborious to see there being house for the Texas senator in a subject that features the previous president and perhaps (doubtless?) Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis.
However Cruz may properly be angling to be within the vice-presidential combine if Trump winds up as GOP nominee in 2024. Both approach, Cruz is putting a wager that being firmly within the Trump camp (slightly than the McConnell camp) can pay future political dividends for him.
This story has been up to date with extra info.