Is Ted Cruz the GOP 2012 Secret Weapon?

posted at 7:00 pm on October 8, 2011 by Jazz Shaw

I first met Ted Cruz nearly a year ago and one of the first questions which came to mind was, “why is this guy running so hard, so early, for a Senate seat?” But it’s not such a crazy idea, apparently. The Texas conservative has been going around the country and building a network of supporters which is crucial to a run in a state of that size. Not missing an opportunity to take the platform before a large, conservative audience, Mr. Cruz apparently brought the house down this weekend at the Value Voters Summit.

Former Texas Solicitor General Ted Cruz might not be a household name, but the candidate for Senate was cheered heartily at the conservative Values Voter Summit in Washington, D.C.

Working without notes and pacing the stage like a preacher, Cruz talked about defending “American values” and said liberals have “a reason to be worried” about the next election.

He got big laughs when he said that President Obama blaming the Tea Party for America’s credit downgrade was “a little bit like Charlie Sheen blaming [his problems] on the Betty Ford clinic.”

That may sound like a throwaway line to a friendly, red meat audience, but it’s precisely that kind of original, unscripted, genuine connection which a speaker makes with an audience that can build a substantial following. It’s comparable to Herman Cain, who many of us gave long odds for a presidential run but is now surging in the polls. It also doesn’t hurt that Texas is getting a lot of attention these days because of Rick Perry’s run, and the two doubtless share more than a few ideas on policy and conservative ideology.

Stacy McCain snagged an interview with Cruz this week, (who he calls “the Marco Rubio of Texas”) which you can see in full here. A short takeaway from the exchange:

McCain: And as some people have compared you to Marco Rubio, as the “Marco Rubio of Texas,” you are yourself also Cuban.

Cruz: Well, that’s right. And that’s an incredibly kind comparison. Marco and I share a very similar personal story, which is that my dad is from Cuba, he was born there, he grew up there, and he was imprisoned and tortured in Cuba as a teenager when he was 17. And he fled Cuba, he came to the United States. When he was 18, he showed up in Austin. Had no money, didn’t speak English, had 100 dollars sewn into his underwear, and he went and got a job as a dishwasher making 50 cents an hour. And he worked 7 days a week and he paid his way through school at the University of Texas. And I’ll tell you, Robert, when I was a kid my dad used to say to me all the time, “when we faced depression in Cuba, I had a place to flee to. If we lose our freedom here, where do we go?” And there’s no question that better explains why it is I’m running for Senate than that question right there.

Cruz may be one of the next generation of “new breed” Republicans making headlines in the 2012 cycle. It’s probably worth your time to check him out.

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Here is an excellent article about him that is pretty accurate to who Ted is.
ramrants on October 8, 2011 at 9:19 PM

Thanks for the NRO link. It sounds like he would make a brilliant Attorney General too. I’d love to see someone turn the Civil Rights Division on its ass.

Buy Danish on October 9, 2011 at 8:37 AM

…This meme that Texans are over the moon sending illegals to college, is blatantly false:

Texas voters are willing to end automatic citizenship for the U.S.-born children of undocumented immigrants, according to the latest University of Texas/Texas Tribune poll.

The poll also found them willing to crack down on immigration in a number of other ways — punishing employers who knowingly hire illegal immigrants, taking in-state tuition away from immigrants’ children, opposing a path to citizenship for immigrants who are currently in the country illegally and cracking down on so-called sanctuary cities.

And the idea that Texans were of a different mind ten years ago, and have done a complete 180 turn on the issue, is nonsense. Big money interests loves them some illegals, and the unfortunate truth is they have entirely too much pull in the state government.

Rebar on October 8, 2011 at 9:48 PM

Thanks for posting that, I was pleased to read it.

As to Cruz, count me among the American voters (and citizens) who remain SOMEWHAT suspicious of people in the U.S. from Cuba or by way of Cubans arriving here (their parents). It has nothing to do with any race, ethnicity but it does have a lot to do with knowing that Castro deployed and maintains an extensive espionage network in the U.S. and many of those in his covert employ maintain themselves in the U.S. as Cubans who “fled Cuba because…”

I’m glad that Cruz is Conservative and espousing Conservative values. I’m just taking a wait-and-see stance about him, that’s all, based upon some very basic instincts and knowledge of just how destructive Castro and his communists are toward our nation.

I’m curious why the two latest flavors by the GOP, also, are Rubio and Cruz. Give me more information, is what I’m asking, until I swoon or offer my support.

Lourdes on October 9, 2011 at 9:53 AM

Texas voters are willing to end automatic citizenship for the U.S.-born children of undocumented immigrants, according to the latest University of Texas/Texas Tribune poll.

And that speaks for many of us Americans, Texans or not.

Lourdes on October 9, 2011 at 9:55 AM

Nor do conservatives want another Bush, who would sign an amnesty bill that would wreck this nation irreparably. If he (Perry) wasn’t going to disavow his softness on illegals, he shouldn’t have run – instead he doubles down on it and insults conservatives in the bargain…

Rebar on October 9, 2011 at 1:39 AM

Agreed.

And this is why I am reticent to immediately jump on a support bandwagon for those who are being sold as and are identifying as ethnicity as primary characteristic.

Lourdes on October 9, 2011 at 9:58 AM

Thanks for the NRO link. It sounds like he would make a brilliant Attorney General too. I’d love to see someone turn the Civil Rights Division on its ass.

Buy Danish on October 9, 2011 at 8:37 AM

No, no, no, no, we finally get a chance to put a real righty in KBH’s seat and y’all keep wantin’ to move him on out. Jeeze, with Cruz in there Cornyn will move to the right.

And that speaks for many of us Americans, Texans or not.

Lourdes on October 9, 2011 at 9:55 AM

Brilliant deductive powers ya’ got there.

cozmo on October 9, 2011 at 10:02 AM

Ted Cruz…is a well-educated, highly experienced latino with an amazing story and even better track record. I think he’s the next Governor of Texas.

cannonball on October 8, 2011 at 9:15 PM

Hmmmm…what about being “latino” qualifies him for anything? Does me being Norse qualify me for public office? Getting very turned off as a voter as to these identity politics and those who sell themselves using such.

If he’s qualified, he’s qualified, but what does being “latino” endow him with that qualifies him for office?

Lourdes on October 9, 2011 at 10:10 AM

Brilliant deductive powers ya’ got there.

cozmo on October 9, 2011 at 10:02 AM

If that was a sincere compliment, I’d write, “thank you.”

I’d venture to guess, however, contrary to the flippancy take on this issue, that the majority of Americans think that “birthright citizenship” to children of illegal aliens (and tourists/visa holders who arrive here for sole purpose of giving birth for such) should be revoked. The 14th Amendment was never intended to provide as much. Which is what I referred to in my comments:

Lourdes on October 9, 2011 at 9:55 AM

Lourdes on October 9, 2011 at 10:14 AM

a real righty

“Compassionate conservative”? That was W’s justification for pushing amnesty for illegal aliens. And it’s still what his brother, Jeb, is trying to push in various candidates he’s supporting.

So voters are certainly REASONABLE to ask pointed questions of candidates or likely/possible candidates. We should have pressed W. more on this.

Lourdes on October 9, 2011 at 10:15 AM

Maybe Ted Cruz is the real deal, as to representing Conservative bona fides. That’d be great if so.

All I’m suggesting — asking for myself before I offer support — is that people not engage in hero-worship before the gate is open and do a bit more thorough discovery before doing The Safety Dance.

Lourdes on October 9, 2011 at 10:19 AM

Rebar on October 8, 2011 at 9:48 PM

You get funnier every time you bring that up.

cozmo on October 8, 2011 at 9:53 PM

Incidentally, “cozmo,” your “personal webspace has been discontinued.”

Lourdes on October 9, 2011 at 10:21 AM

By 2020, the Texas Hispanic population is expected to outnumber the White population (Exhibit 8)

rukiddingme on October 8, 2011 at 10:48 PM

So threatening the public (or trying to) with ethnic supremacy declarations (or, in your case, expectations) is your solution to good government for the U.S.A.?

What about “your race” (so-call3ed) justifies or qualifies you or anyone else of similar “race” (so-called) to anything? I mean, on any associative level?

People (human beings, that means, of any race or combination of races) qualify (or should, or are hoped to) on the basis of their character, what their abilities are, NOT on what their DNA “says” when compared with any other.

Lourdes on October 9, 2011 at 10:29 AM

Perry’s flameout is entirely his own making. And before the ad hominum attacks continue, 77% of Hot Air readers agree.

Rebar on October 9, 2011 at 1:39 AM

Heh, fling poo then whine about ad hominum attacks. Good one.
Aren’t you the guy that called Perry the “flavor of the month” last month? Whats your problem then? He’s doing what you want.

Lourdes on October 9, 2011 at 10:14 AM

Evidently, you are willfully completely ignorant of the alternatives in this primary.

Incidentally, “cozmo,” your “personal webspace has been discontinued.”

Lourdes on October 9, 2011 at 10:21 AM

That’s because you don’t have the secret decoder ring.

I see you are on a pretty good Cruz hating rant though, catty carry on.

cozmo on October 9, 2011 at 10:32 AM

cozmo on October 9, 2011 at 10:32 AM

Some of you Perry people, are getting as weird and annoying as Ron Paul cultists.

Rebar on October 9, 2011 at 11:15 AM

Some of you Perry people, are getting as weird and annoying as Ron Paul cultists.

Rebar on October 9, 2011 at 11:15 AM

That may be, its a good thing I’m not a Perry person.

You nutball haters are still nutball haters though.

cozmo on October 9, 2011 at 11:19 AM

You nutball haters are still nutball haters though.

cozmo on October 9, 2011 at 11:19 AM

Being against illegal immigration means I’m a “nutball hater”?

Ok.

Rebar on October 9, 2011 at 11:32 AM

Being against illegal immigration means I’m a “nutball hater”?
Rebar on October 9, 2011 at 11:32 AM

Not at all. Most normal folks are against illegal immigration.

Your fanatical zeal to focus on Perry, like a laser (diffuse as it is), as the root of illegal immigration and your delusional belief that a fence will solve all those ills puts you in the nutball category.

Heck, this thread isn’t even about Perry. Yet, the convoluted thinking in that pea brain of yours contorts a thread about a fine candidate for a senate seat in Texas, into one about Perrylove for illegals.

That is what makes you a nutball Perryhater.

cozmo on October 9, 2011 at 11:49 AM

Rebar claims to live in the state but apparently hasn’t noticed that FOR YEARS, you can’t swing a dead cat without hitting a brown person.

ramrants on October 9, 2011 at 12:26 AM

He hasn’t lived here for years, just moved here over a year ago:

I’m planning on moving to Texas as soon as I sell my house.

Rebar on March 31, 2010 at 12:41 PM

Inside his carpetbag, he brought his Know Nothing membership card and his desire for Perry to be President of Fantasy Island:

Besides, if necessary, he WILL be the President – of TEXAS!
honsy on April 17, 2010 at 8:00 PM

Yup, pretty much a lock on President of the Republic of America.
And it’s looking more and more likely that it will indeed be necessary.

Rebar on April 17, 2010 at 8:37 PM

When Perry announced he was seeking POTUS, Rebar was left standing at the altar. He is now very angry:

He knows full well the progressive homosexual agenda will use the “full faith and credit” clause as a club to force all the states to recognize “gay marriage” through federal judicial fiat.

If and when that happens, will he have the courage of his convictions?

I’m beginning to doubt it.

Rebar on July 24, 2011 at 11:32 AM

When love turns to hate, what’s a jilted bride to do?

rukiddingme on October 9, 2011 at 11:51 AM

Hispanics who are here legally, want the illegals gone just as much as anyone else.

Right, that’s why Hispanics, who are 38% of the Texas population, are just 16% of the BS poll. That’s also why of the Hispanics that were polled: only 32% favor revoking birthright citizenship, only 42% are opposed to sanctuary cities, and only 40% oppose soliciting day laborers.

Nice try at the race card, though, don’t give up using it on my account.

Rebar on October 9, 2011 at 12:30 AM

The race card is all yours. You carry it with your BS poll.

rukiddingme on October 9, 2011 at 11:53 AM

When love turns to hate, what’s a jilted bride to do?

rukiddingme on October 9, 2011 at 11:51 AM

Your memory is better than mine. I sometimes think we need a fence along the northern border. The Red river.

cozmo on October 9, 2011 at 11:54 AM

Lourdes on October 9, 2011 at 10:29 AM

Texas is 38% Hispanic today. In 2020, Hispanic’s are predicted to become Texas’ majority population.

If you think the majority of Hispanics agree with this BS poll that you agree with, you might try thinking again.

rukiddingme on October 9, 2011 at 11:55 AM

Your memory is better than mine. I sometimes think we need a fence along the northern border. The Red river.

cozmo on October 9, 2011 at 11:54 AM

Yep, if only Texas had anti-immigration laws against yankee carpetbaggers…..

rukiddingme on October 9, 2011 at 11:58 AM

cozmo on October 9, 2011 at 11:49 AM

I never said a fence was a magic bullet, I always said it was part of a comprehensive system, along with E-Verify, punishing employers, and several other steps.

You deliberately misrepresent my position.

I guess I’ll have to add you to the weird creepy trolls, like rukiddingme, who post to somehow “prove me wrong”, but only serve to make themselves look like the nutballs they accuse me of being.

Rebar on October 9, 2011 at 12:00 PM

Rebar on October 9, 2011 at 12:00 PM

Heh, you just do that. I am proud to be considered a nutball by the likes of y’all.

cozmo on October 9, 2011 at 12:04 PM

Being against illegal immigration means I’m a “nutball hater”?

Not quite, being anti-immigration gets you there.

I’m for a 10-15 year immigration moratorium.

Rebar on May 1, 2011 at 7:56 PM

GOP platform of 1860 wasn’t against immigration, neither is the 2008 platform.

Know Nothing

rukiddingme on October 9, 2011 at 12:06 PM

Hey, rebar brain, Lourdybee annd whattagoofycat, new Cruz thread for y’all to show y’alls intelligence again.

Batter up!

cozmo on October 9, 2011 at 12:09 PM

What legal path exists for those who are in the country illegally?

whatcat on October 9, 2011 at 2:24 AM

A green card or student visa.

tmontgomery on October 9, 2011 at 1:35 PM

What legal path exists for those who are in the country illegally?

whatcat on October 9, 2011 at 2:24 AM

A green card or student visa.

tmontgomery on October 9, 2011 at 1:35 PM

Don’t both of those require the applicant to be in the country legally, i.e. legal immigrants?

whatcat on October 9, 2011 at 6:31 PM

Stop illegal immigration, but don’t give into the zero population growth advocates puppeteering of our party.

conservador on October 9, 2011 at 7:35 PM

Oh, “the Marco Rubio of Texas” aka the latest non-Caucasian celebrity candidate, eh?

Some keep trying so hard on this, it really is becoming hilarious.

Moesart on October 9, 2011 at 9:00 PM

Watts let me down BIG TIME when he came out in support for Obama.

Punchenko on October 9, 2011 at 12:54 AM
Watts voted for McCain…grudgingly. Powell voted for O’-and said that he was doing so because O’ was black.

annoyinglittletwerp on October 10, 2011 at 3:28 AM

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