Why is the GOP So Afraid of Ted Cruz?

PolitiChicks.com How prophetic Abraham Lincoln was when he observed that “a house divided against itself cannot stand.” That seems to be the situation facing the United States this coming election. Specifically, I’m terrified of a Presidential election where the representatives of the two major parties are Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders. There have always been differences between Republicans and Democrats, but having to choose between Trump and Sanders? I never thought it possible that a modern day Presidential race could ever involve such radically different ideologies

The Democrat nomination seemed to be Hillary Clinton’s to lose, but not only is Sanders is gaining support, there is the very real possibility Clinton’s candidacy could be completely derailed by the ongoing e-mail server scandal. Sanders was the only Democrat to offer serious opposition to Clinton and if her campaign collapses, Sanders is in perfect position to win the nomination by default.

I have paid attention to the rather large field of potential Republican presidential candidates. I looked at how they did in the debates and I read their stances on the issues. Ultimately I decided that Ted Cruz was the best candidate. I obviously wasn’t alone in deciding to support Cruz as it has now become apparent that Cruz has emerged as Trump’s chief rival. While the polls are certainly important, it’s obvious that Cruz is seen as a viable candidate for the GOP nomination because it’s at this stage of the contest that people start to reveal their true intentions. It’s easy to identify Cruz as a top candidate because the attacks on him have intensified. It’s Politics 101: You attack the person you see as the biggest threat. It’s a dead giveaway as to how formidable you are perceived.

I try to think through things from a common sense perspective. Our right to vote is a sacred right and everyone needs to educate themselves as to what each candidate believes and how each would perform as President. I’m perfectly fine if someone educates themselves on the issues and votes differently than me. I’m scared by people who vote based on emotions and perceptions as opposed to knowledge. All I can do is focus on how I arrived at my own decision.

First, I’m a Christian. Second, I’m a capitalist. Those two views are not mutually exclusive. I ask myself: “Under what system I a most likely to enjoy freedom of religion?” A communist system which seeks to control both resources and political ideology, socialism which seeks to control resources, or capitalism which has the beauty of leaving both resources and government control in the hands of the people. I feel best protected under capitalism. America became a great nation due to its faith in God and an economic foundation rooted in capitalism. How many nations on earth offer the freedoms we enjoy as Americans? Why would any of us ever want to relinquish any of those freedoms? Moreover, why would anyone give up any freedom voluntarily?

The best place to see where each candidate stands is to go to their official websites. Let’s start with Bernie Sanders: berniesanders.com

What does Sanders believe? His major concerns are income and wealth inequality, job creation, higher minimum wages, battling climate change, lowering the cost of prescription drugs, Wall Street reform, and continued support of the Iran deal.

Sanders has made no secret that he is a socialist. Even more terrifying, according to a recent poll, 31% of Americans view the term favorably. Do people even understand what socialism implies? Can anyone name a socialist regime in history that has ever proved successful? The answer would be no. Socialism is doomed to failure because it presumes a central authority (i.e. government) can allocate resources better than people in a free market can do on their own. For one to embrace this ideology, you would have to be the kind of person who marvels at the efficiency and output you see coming from a governmental body or agency. That notion is absurd. Guess what? Everyone can’t have everything. Even if the government could put people on equal footing, people would still compete for resources. It’s human nature. Under capitalism, this process happens naturally, under socialism it happens through government corruption and inefficiency. If you eliminate any profit motives, why bother to even try starting a business? Are people seriously going to form and operate businesses with the sole intent to benefit society? Even if such persons existed, it’s highly doubtful they would be wise businesspeople.

Sanders proposes to fix income inequality and problems on Wall Street by taxing corporations and stock traders into oblivion. Somehow this will correct inequality but not impair the ability of businesses to hire more people at higher wages? One way Sanders proposes to create jobs is by instituting a massive infrastructure repair and build up project. Wonderful. Anyone can plainly see that if everyone works for the government, there is no way for government to start imposing their will on everyone without major consequences. Right? Of course not! Throw in the fact that Sanders wants everyone to have a free college education and it will ultimately be up to the government to assign my profession to me instead of me choosing it. It will be ok though, because if my job requires heavy labor, I still get paid the same as the person in an air-conditioned office building. However, medication won’t be an issue because I can buy prescription drugs at little cost. Granted, the drugs probably won’t be all that effective, because pharmaceutical companies won’t continue to invest heavily in research and development because their profits have vanished, but at least I can afford them. I will also be healthier because the climate will improve. Sanders won’t use our military unless absolutely necessary. Diplomacy is obviously the way to go because nations like Iran always tell the truth and act in good faith. They may snatch our citizens without legitimate cause, but no problem, we can just trade Iranians who were justly and duly prosecuted in our country in exchange. That will teach them a lesson we mean business. The environment will be just fine because there is no way Iran can possibly get their hands on a nuke and even if they do, it will take 15 years, by which time they will be friendly with everyone and would never ever think of detonating any nukes.

If you want to know Clinton’s stance on the issues go to: hillaryclinton.com

Her stance on the issues aren’t as radical as Sanders. That isn’t necessarily meant as a compliment. If you are happy with the Obama Administration, you can more or less expect the same under a Clinton administration. There is no need to elaborate on Clinton’s highly questionable ethics. Even Sanders has attacked her on that point.

The American Democrat Party has definitely made more of a shift to the left, but they are in better shape than the GOP. At least Clinton’s stance on the issues is consistent with the party and the Democrats are far more unified.

The same can’t be said of the GOP. Why? After 8 years of Obama, this election should be a cake walk. It stands to reason, that if things have not gone well under the party in power, the voters will vote in someone from the other party. Has Obama made our economy better? Has he made us safer? Is it wise to continue on the same path? As a traditional Republican I am extremely alarmed by the direction America is taking. I would imagine most Republicans feel the same way. So why would the Republican establishment embrace Trump rather than going with Cruz? Their logic stretches the limits of credulity.

Look at Cruz’ website: tedcruz.org

If one looks at Cruz’ stance on the issues, it seems fairly straightforward to me. It sounds like a traditional conservative Republican platform. The only major changes Cruz proposes are to the tax code and reducing the size of government. Reducing taxes doesn’t seem to be a controversial issue within the GOP. Cruz, Rubio, and even Trump have all proposed changes to the tax code. It should be noted though that Cruz was the first to actually make his plan available on his website, which to me means he had more foresight than the others. Reducing taxes is a good way to stimulate the economy. The GOP seems unified on this issue. As I mentioned in regards to Sanders, no one is ever going to look at a government run agency and marvel at its efficiency. If Cruz wants to eliminate federal agencies I have no problem with it. The United States isn’t exactly sitting pretty in regards to debt. We don’t have the luxury of wasting tax dollars. Plus, I believe in capitalism. If a government agency is eliminated and it provides a valuable service, then someone in the private sector will fill the void.

Cruz also expresses traditional Christian family values, supports the 2nd Amendment, and the Constitution itself. He is opposed to the President overstepping their bounds and abusing authority as has Obama.

Finally, look at Trump’s website: donaldjtrump.com

I saw nothing on his website about his stance on conservative issues such as abortion and religion. From Day 1, Trump has made immigration his top priority. I’m all in favor of deporting illegal immigrants, but I don’t want to see the establishment of a police state to do it. Combine that notion with other groups Trump doesn’t like and you have a very dangerous situation. Once all illegal immigrants are deported who’s next? Trump’s rhetoric seems to be that if you disagree with him, you are weak and un-American. If Trump becomes President, would we see a cult of personality form around him? All 4 websites I have mentioned contain brief biographies of the candidates. The bios found on Cruz, Clinton, and Sander’s sites are typical and tactful. Trump’s bio is self aggrandizing to say the least. He has no problem with ego.

Trump is not a long-time established Republican with a strong voting record to back his claims. So why would someone like Bob Dole question Cruz’ loyalty to the GOP and call him an ‘extremist.’ Why would Sarah Palin turn on Cruz and back Trump? Shouldn’t the GOP field the person who has the best chance of winning? Are they losing touch with reality? The fact is that no GOP candidate since George H.W. Bush in 1988 has won an election handily. Since then, the only GOP Presidential victories were two very very close races.

Dole and Palin are excellent examples of poor GOP planning. Maybe the fact they don’t like Cruz is a good thing. Dole earned only 29.6% of the electoral vote, McCain earned 32.2%, and Romney earned 38.3%. In modern day politics, none of these outcomes came as a surprise. By the time of Election Day, none of these candidates had any chance of winning. The fact is that Democrats have solid support in states with a large number of electoral votes. When you have California and New York behind your party, I leaves little margin for error on the other side. Is Donald Trump likely to win the vote in the swing states? Seriously, the Republicans actually think an utterly non-conventional politician like Trump can do it? Are they even trying to win the White House?

The answer is simple: In the eyes of the GOP, Cruz committed the unforgivable sin. He dared challenge the establishment, an establishment that is worried about losing liberal donors. Even if it means another Democratic President, some in the GOP are more dedicated to punishing Cruz than winning the White House. His fellow GOP senators don’t care for his rhetoric because it’s hard to hear the truth. Cruz knows it himself. Cruz knows that there is a serious problem in the Republican Party: The conservative platform isn’t in alignment with those who donate to the Republican Party. He isn’t oblivious to this. However, the man is willing to stand on his principles. Principled people in politics are rarely loved by their peers. Iowa is now the most recent example of Cruz standing his ground.

What is really going on and why is Cruz correct? He had to have known opposing the ethanol mandate in Iowa would have resulted in serious opposition. Cruz has seen millions of dollars in attack ads result from his stance. The backlash has been severe, but what does Cruz’ stance really entail?

It has been estimated that the ethanol mandate increases the amount Americans pay for fuel by $10 billion. Who wants to pay more for gas? I don’t. Plus, it’s hard to back an ethanol mandate at a time when crude oil prices are falling. It entails the government spending money to keep the cost of fuel high. His stance seems perfectly reasonable. Unlike Sanders, it also reflects a belief that the free market, not government, is best suited to allocate resources.

The real question is why are Republicans shifting support towards Trump? Cruz has been gaining in the polls. Something about him is obviously appealing to conservatives. Is it possible that the party establishment has overlooked its own principles? Cruz has consistently opposed Obama. Legislation such as Obamacare has been passed and continues to stand despite the GOP having the majority in both houses of Congress. They continue to cave in to Obama. Cruz has continually stood his ground. Is the GOP waving the white flag? The Democrats have the advantage of knowing their base of support and feel comfortable taking the stances they do. The Republicans seem disorganized and unsure of themselves. Playing the middle ground is the same as giving up. It’s time for the GOP to refocus. It would be naïve to think that all personal differences can be settled, but sometimes you have to back the person whom your base supports. Don’t try to force a candidate on me.

I want a President who will act wisely. I don’t want a socialist President, I don’t want a President who will continue Obama’s policies, and I don’t want a President who is unpredictable and out of control. I want a President who will begin to right the ship. I want to see Ted Cruz as President. I believe he will bring strong leadership and represent a return to Conservative values. We desperately need someone who can restore the balance of power between Democrats and Republicans.


Michael Russell

A native, of Indiana, Russell has always been interested in politics. He is a Libertarian and strong supporter of conservative causes. He has spent the last 20 years as an investment analyst. Russell and his wife Ginger have 3 children.

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