The Senate Doesn’t Hate Ted Cruz because of His Personality, but His Politics

Maybe “hate” is too strong a word.

The issue was raised by Donald Trump and the Washington Times ran a story about it.

Donald Trump’s claim that Sen. Ted Cruz is “nasty” and “everybody hates” him in Washington isn’t ringing true with his Senate colleagues, who say he’s a passionate legislator — though they haven’t rushed to embrace the Texan, either.

So Trump says they hate Ted Cruz.

The thing to keep in mind is that the Washington Times attempts to serve a conservative, neoconservative, and Establishment Republican readership. So their story is pretty much as ambiguous as the lead paragraph indicates. They don’t outright condemn Ted Cruz, but they leave doubt in the readers’ minds as to whether Trump is right.

As a result, the story ends up sounding like it is siding with Donald Trump! That’s a bit ironic. At least it seems ironic until you remind yourself that Trump simply repeated an Establishment Republican and liberal talking-point against Cruz. The purpose of the criticism was to portray Ted Cruz’s differences with the other Republican Senators as his own personality flaws rather than real political differences.

I doubt I’ll be voting for Cruz in the primary, but enmity with a Congress that just added over a trillion dollars onto the backs of Americans is a point in his favor, not against him.

The Washington Times interviewed Senator Cory Gardner (Colorado) who insisted that Cruz is respected and that Trump is wrong. Then the article added, “though he was quick to point out he’s one of those backing Mr. Rubio.” Exactly. Trump says it is about personality but Senators who support Marco Rubio obviously have a great deal of disagreement with Cruz over immigration, at least. There’s no need to resort to allegations that Cruz is “nasty,” to explain why no Senator has endorsed him. As the Washington Times story documents, Cruz has fought with the whole Senate over issues like Obamacare—on which he was plainly siding with conservative voters.

Calling Cruz “nasty” is an attempt to stop conservatives from voting for someone who speaks for them despite the opposition of the political establishment.

Not only are most Senators not likely to agree with Cruz, but even the ones who might agree with him probably don’t want to single themselves out as his supporters. If Cruz is widely disliked for the stands he has taken in opposition to the rest of the Republican Senators, then the majority might be able to punish a single Senator who bucked the consensus and endorsed Cruz.

As voters we have very little to go on when we decide between candidates in a primary. Trump is telling you to believe stuff about Cruz’s personality and make a decisions based on that. I suggest you look at his record and decide if you like it best. That’s a better basis for your vote.