Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Is Ted Cruz Lying to Evangelical Christians?

It's no secret that I despise Ted Cruz.  Not only does he remind me of the late Joe McCarthy of the Red Scare days, but he comes across as shifty and untrustworthy, willing to say and do anything to further himself politically.  In this regard, he has fully prostituted himself to the Christofascists in the GOP base and as a result garnered the endorsement of virtually every anti-gay hate group, many of which have strong white supremacy undercurrents.  Now, as a piece in Politico suggests, "Mr. Authenticity" may be a liar, the only issue is determining which time he makes conflicting statements is he lying.  As Politico reports, at a private fundraiser, Cruz has made statements on same sex marriage that would make Christofascist heads explode.  Here are article highlights:  
In June, Ted Cruz promised on NPR that opposition to gay marriage would be “front and center” in his 2016 campaign.  In July, he said the Supreme Court’s decision allowing same-sex marriage was the “very definition of tyranny” and urged states to ignore the ruling.

But in December, behind closed doors at a big-dollar Manhattan fundraiser, the quickly ascending presidential candidate assured a Republican gay-rights supporter that a Cruz administration would not make fighting same-sex marriage a top priority.

In a recording provided to POLITICO, Cruz answers a flat “No” when asked whether fighting gay marriage is a “top-three priority,” an answer that pleased his socially moderate hosts but could surprise some of his evangelical backers.

While Cruz’s private comments to a more moderate GOP audience do not contradict what the Republican Texas senator has said elsewhere, they demonstrate an adeptness at nuance in tone and emphasis that befits his Ivy League background. Indeed, the wording looks jarring when compared with the conservative, evangelical rhetoric he serves at his rallies, which have ballooned in size and excitement as he has moved to the front of the pack in Iowa.

The claim about Cruz by rival campaigns isn’t so much that he changes his message to different audiences, but that the prioritization of his agenda changes.

The recording was provided to POLITICO by an attendee at the fundraiser, held Dec. 9 at the Sullivan & Cromwell law firm on Madison Avenue. The contribution levels were $10,800 to be on the host committee, $2,700 to attend a VIP reception, and $1,000 for lunch. The donors were generally moderate to liberal on social issues, and largely conservative on fiscal and national-security issues.

During the question period, one of the donors told Cruz that gay marriage was one of the few issues on which the two disagreed. Then the donor asked: “So would you say it's like a top-three priority for you — fighting gay marriage?”

“No,” Cruz replied. “I would say defending the Constitution is a top priority. And that cuts across the whole spectrum — whether it's defending [the] First Amendment, defending religious liberty.”

A well-known Republican operative not affiliated with a 2016 campaign said by email when sent Cruz's quote: "Wow. Does this not undermine all of his positions? Abortion, Common Core — all to the states? ... Worse, he sounds like a slick D.C. politician — says one thing on the campaign trail and trims his sails with NYC elites. Not supposed to be like that."

[A]n adviser to a rival campaign, speaking on condition of anonymity because he wants to stay behind the scenes, said the Manhattan comments could help opponents portray Cruz as “calculating” at a time voters are rewarding authenticity.  “There’s an Iowa Ted and a New York Ted,” the adviser said. “He sounds different behind closed doors.”

“His answer [on gay marriage was] the same as all the mainstream candidates,” the operative said. “Cruz gets Carson's evangelical supporters because they believe him to be a born-again Christian, not because of his views on individual issues. He makes a real connection with those voters as they abandon Carson.”

If Cruz is deliberately lying to and playing the Christofascists in the GOP base there would be a delicious irony in it: these people lie at will to further  their theocratic agenda.  It would be fun to watch Cruz out play them at their own game of calculating dishonesty and lies.

1 comment:

EdA said...

Certainly if Ted Cruz is splashing mutually inconsistent promises to different groups, it would not be the first time that a Republiscum presidential candidate has done so. Notorious probably are the get-togethers hosted by the gay owners of the OUT hotel in New York

As Romney's own campaign spokesperson said, Mr. Etch-A-Sketch was perfectly willing to do so if it would help get votes.

Incidentally, and this may just be an artifact of the media I follow, one doesn't hear so much as Democratic candidates speaking out of both sides of their mouths; even if some may change their views (or evolve) over time (and may be doing so for political reasons), I do not recall hearing much about simultaneous proferring mutually incompatible positions.