Video: Yes, Ted Cruz just put out what looks like a presidential campaign ad

Via the Examiner, you can thank Ben Howe for producing this. Is it a presidential campaign teaser? The last line, borrowing Obama’s campaign slogan from 2008, seems freighted with extra significance. I’d never seen something like this from Cruz before either. At first blush, I thought maybe it was his way of stealing a little thunder from Rand Paul’s overt presidential maneuvering lately. Here’s Cruz reminding conservatives that Rand won’t be the only game in town next year.

But after looking through his campaign YouTube account, I realize I’m wrong. Cruz has released at least two ads similar to this one since being elected to the Senate, one last October right after the shutdown ended and another a week before Christmas. Maybe this is just something that politicians with big followings, who may or may not run for national office soon, do now in the age of viral media. Every once in a while they’ll put an ad online for no specific reason beyond polishing their brand and giving their supporters something to share on Facebook and Twitter. Coke and Pepsi don’t advertise only when they’re planning to release a new product; advertising is a constant for major companies, and now that ads can be produced and disseminated cheaply, it’s probably a constant for savvy pols too. Or rather, will be a constant: I checked Elizabeth Warren’s campaign YouTube account, figuring that she’s the closest thing on the left to a Cruz analogue as a grassroots hero who recently joined the Senate, and found that it hasn’t been updated since she was elected. Maybe that’ll change — or maybe the fact that Cruz is doing this and she isn’t really is a sign of which of them is more serious about running for president. Hmmmm.