Quotes of the day

From the husband of an NYPD police officer who died on 9/11 comes an invitation to Sen. Ted Cruz.

“Senator Cruz, I was disappointed by your disparaging remarks about New York values somehow being different from Iowa and New Hampshire values,” read a Facebook post by retired NYPD Police Officer Jim Smith, husband of fallen Police Officer Moira Smith. “I invite you to come to the National 9-11 Memorial and Museum and see for yourself, and perhaps learn something about, the values of New Yorkers and the Heroes who defended American values on September 11th, 2001.”





Marco Rubio invoked “New York values” in a broader attack on Ted Cruz this morning, calling him a huge hypocrite.

“Ted has shown a propensity,” he told Chuck Todd, “throughout his career in the U.S. Senate, to take one position in front of one audience and then change his position in front of another. So he raises money in New York and then criticizes New York values.”…

Rubio said, “I’ve never used that phrase. I think we’re all Americans. I’m campaigning on behalf of American values.” He said the fact that Cruz uses that line but then fundraises in New York shows “the level of political calculation” that goes into his campaign.


Indeed I truly believed that 9/11 brought New Yorkers together with all other Americans because all we were doing is what any patriotic American would do. No different than the people of Boston after the Marathon bombing or the people of San Bernardino, who I visited with two weeks ago, did after the jihadist attack of Dec. 2, 2015.

After all we have been through as a city and as one undivided nation, to have a United States senator running for President paint New York as a city consumed with greed, sin and media obsession is shocking. Sen. Ted Cruz should apologize to the people of New York for his remarks and to the people of the United States for his crass attempt to divide us. And whatever our inclinations in the presidential race, all of us should be proud of Donald Trump’s strong, truthful and eloquent defense of our great city and nation.

As the late, great New Yorker, Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan, made clear in his authoritative analysis of the federal budget, every year New York sends billions of dollars more to Washington, D.C., than Washington sends to us. And one of the reasons for that is Wall Street, the financial engine that makes all the programs we support, Republican, Democrat and bi-partisan, possible. When Sen. Cruz and so many of the other candidates of both parties come to New York City, they seem pretty happy to be here and are more than willing to take our money.

Well if you’re willing to take our money, then show us the respect we deserve and earned and don’t try to divide us from our fellow Americans.


Longtime New Yorker and Republican donor John Catsimatidis said Sen. Ted Cruz should be ashamed for insulting “New York values” in the Thursday night Republican presidential debate and in interviews.

“I think that whether you’re a Democrat or whether you’re Republican, that every New Yorker was upset about it. Because it was nuts!” the grocery store mogul and Republican donor told MSNBC on Friday afternoon. “A presidential candidate should not try and tear up the country by tearing up section by section.”

“I think he’s trying to say that ‘Hey, you guys are New York: You got too many gays, you got too many transgenders, you got too many this, you got too many that.’ Look, we live in the greatest city in the world, New York, and I think he should be ashamed,” he said, calling the remark a “mistake” but saying he’d considering hearing the senator out more if he apologized.


“I think it was a very, very ill-advised thing for Ted to say,” Christie said. “You want to be President of the United States, you have to unite this country. And for him to somehow be implying that certain values are more appropriate, more American, depending upon what region of the country you’re from, is to me just asinine.”…

Christie called Cruz “the most inside guy in this race,” despited Cruz’s frequent claims to be an outsider seeking to reform the party. “I think Ted once again is trying to be Mr. Ivy League cute,” he charged. “He’s Harvard and Princeton, he’s federal court clerkships, he’s government jobs, and somehow he’s an outsider? If you took his name off and you put that résumé down, that would look like the consummate Washington insider.”

Cruz’s assault on Trump for having “New York values” comes just weeks before Iowa begins voting and marks a shift from Cruz’s past praise for the former reality television star and businessman. Christie said Cruz was reading off Trump’s playbook as he doubled-down on the attack line. “It’s a political game to try to differentiate himself from Donald Trump who he’s been kissing up to for nine months,” Christie said. “And now all of the sudden two weeks out from the Iowa caucuses Donald’s this evil guy when Ted’s been defending him all along?”…

“If those values are bad, I don’t know why you would want to take money from people whose values you don’t agree with—especially if you’re some upright guy like Ted Cruz.”


Cruz – get out. Get outta here. You are not what we want. Obama, the divider. Cruz, the divider. And God help him, and I want to say this, God help him if we found out in some private conversation Cruz have with somebody, that his reference in New York had just an ounce of anti-semitism. Again trying to appeal to the worst instincts of the evangelicals, by the way, by the way Senator Cruz … you went to Princeton, so did I, you went to Harvard Law School, I didn’t, but let me tell you something: Church-going Evangelicals all across this country love the State of Israel for its democracy and its values. And however many Jewish people there are in New York, these are good folks. These are good folks. And evangelicals have stood behind them as Iran and Isis and all the terrorist groups that Obama is playing footsie with try to destroy Israel. We won’t have it. We will not have it. New York is part of that battle, but so are evangelicals all across the country – in Iowa, in Colorado, in Texas, in California. Don’t pull that sophomoric stuff Cruz. You are disqualified. I am disqualifying you.

If Donald Trump’s going to win, and he looks like he will, if … let him choose Marco Rubio or someone with a cool head, an open mind; someone who loves America and understands good values here in New York as well as Iowa as well as Michigan as well as Texas as well as Georgia. That’s a uniting force: goodwill, family values, religious values, defense of freedom, here, overseas, Israel. Cruz bombed. I don’t want the story to go away. I don’t want this story to go away. I want him out of the race. I’m sorry, I want him out of the race.


This is hilarious. The Metropolitan Republican Club has been around since 1902. It’s a pretty big deal up there, with virtually very Republican Presidential nominee since 1930 using the club’s offices as its NYC headquarters.

The Club held its straw poll, which was conducted after Ted Cruz’s statements about New York values. The results? Ted Cruz came in first place, beating Donald Trump.


But the handy thing about the concept of “New York values” is that everybody thinks they’re something different. Was Cruz saying Trump is a liberal? That he’s un-American? That he’s crass, amoral? People can fill in the blanks. To the voters Cruz is targeting, the phrase can suggest any number of things — and it does. In an election season characterized by blunt political instruments, New York values is a effective for its relative subtlety.

On an anecdotal level, activists assembled at a tea party convention in Myrtle Beach on Saturday all had different responses for what New York values means to them…

“I’ve never been to New York, I really don’t know,” said Steve Brown, 58. “Well, I’m seeing that Mayor de Blasio and he seems to be against his own police force and he’s against the Second Amendment, and if that’s their values I don’t want nothing to do with it.”…

“Our son is dating a New York girl, she’s Italian, and he made the comment, this was months ago, about she’s got New York attitude,” said Cathy Johnson, 59. “It’s just, I don’t know how to explain it, they have their own beliefs. They’re strong opinionated, that’s what it is, strong opinions.”


Conservative media commentator Glenn Beck lashed out Friday at Donald Trump’s “despicable” use of the 9/11 terrorist attacks to discredit GOP presidential rival Sen. Ted Cruz’s criticism of Trump’s “New York values.”…

In the panel debate on the bitter exchange between Trump and Cruz at the Thursday night debate in South Carolina, Beck accused the current liberal New York Mayor Bill de Blasio of being so left-wing, he’s “a communist.”

“The guy they elected as mayor of New York is a communist, and everybody knows it,” Beck railed. “And for Donald Trump to play that card was a despicable slap in the face to 9/11.”

Yet, Beck charged, “the media is coming out and saying, ‘Donald Trump is exactly right on it.’ They’re all praising him. It’s because they’re all liberal.”


Yes, there are some Republicans in New York (Wall Street’s there, after all), but it’s a place whose values and culture really are different from those of the average Republican primary voter. That’s particularly true of Iowa, which Cruz hopes will be his springboard to victory. Republican caucus attendees are 99 percent white, mostly evangelical Christian, and extremely conservative.

Many of them look at New York and see someplace they can’t relate to, not just because it’s run by liberals, but also because it’s the epicenter of urban America, a place of noise and youth and rapid change. It’s a city of immigrants and a city of minorities — more than a third of the city’s population is foreign-born, and two-thirds are non-white. “New York is like a piece of the United States that’s not exactly traditional, it’s such a mixture of all kinds of feelings, all kind of backgrounds,” one Republican voter attending a tea party convention this weekend told BuzzFeed’s Rosie Gray. “I think it’s almost too much diversity.” Those feelings are the target for Cruz’s appeal

And the truth is that for all the candidates talk about unity and being a president for all Americans, the reality of geographic divisions is undeniable. Blue states are getting more liberal in their laws (raising the minimum wage, legalizing marijuana, passing gun restrictions) while red states are getting more conservative (encouraging more gun ownership, restricting abortion rights, waging war on unions).


It has been said that you cannot understand America without understanding New York City, and the first thing to understand about New York is that it isn’t very much like the rest of America. That is true, unquestionably. But New York’s traditional virtues — its brashness, its hustle and enterprise, its anything-is-possible attitude — are the traditional American virtues, just as the city’s vices — its materialism, its self-importance, its fascination with the transitory and the impermanent — are the American vices, too. Conservatives, of all people, should be more attuned to the virtues of the nation’s commercial center; let the nation’s art-school dropouts sneer at that great collision of money and culture. The city has been the incubator of our best minds — Buckley, Friedman, Podhoretz, Kristol — and is home to great conservative institutions from The New Criterion and the Manhattan Institute to this magazine. Ayn Rand, who didn’t understand people but had a great and admirable capacity to be arrested by the beauty of human achievements, loved New York as only an immigrant can.

To the extent that “New York values” is another way of saying “urban values” — and it is, to a great extent — conservatives would do well to develop a keener appreciation of them. (Never mind, for the moment, the notion that Donald Trump’s values are identical to the values of New York, in which he is a figure of fun rather than a figure of respect.) From a matter of pure self-interest, Republicans would be in much better shape if their presidential candidates did not start in an electoral hole, with California, New York, New Jersey, and Illinois wrapped up in a bow for the Democrats. It isn’t California ranchers and Illinois farmers who have handed those states to the Left, but city-dwelling people who believe with some reason — Ted Cruz has just given them another — that Republicans hate them

When Ronald Reagan was elected, 74 percent of the U.S. population lived in cities; today it is 82 percent. From 2000 to 2010, the nation’s population grew by 9.7 percent — but the city population grew by 12.1 percent. And those urbanites are not entirely pleased with the Democratic monopolies that govern most of them: In Flint, the Democrats are literally poisoning the children; in Atlanta, the schools are so corrupt that teachers and administrators had to be sent to prison; elsewhere, urban Americans are literally up in arms (Molotov cocktails, at least) over their treatment at the hands of the city powers they interact with most often: the police. New York City is sliding back into pre-Giuliani chaos.

And what are Republicans doing? Sneering at “New York values,” when they should be seeking to satisfy the best of those values, such as the entrepreneurial spirit and the hunger for advancement — which are, after all, the best of American values, too.


But while the short-term political implications are obvious (the two men are fighting over Iowa—and the GOP nomination), this is also a microcosm of a larger phenomenon: Many conservatives see rural America as the “real America.”…

But whether an agrarian society is morally superior, or not, population trends have (for a long time, now) been moving toward urbanization.

It is perfectly understandable why a politician hoping to woo Iowa caucusgoers would want to pander to the rural base of the GOP.

It is less understandable why a movement hoping to win the 21st century would abide.


The base doesn’t need the “New York values” dog whistle Cruz is blowing in its direction. The base is politically and ideologically literate. Which means, maybe, Cruz and everybody else have had it entirely backwards. The Trump voter is a challenge to the Republican base as we’ve understood it since the Reagan era, not a member of it. Indeed, the Trump voter may represent a potentially new Republican base—and one that embraces Trump’s version of “New York values.”

Those values aren’t the ones Woody Allen was teasing. Nor are they the values of 9/11. They are the values of the New York of caricature—the Walter Winchell–Ralph Kramden–Archie Bunker–Andrew Dice Clay–Spike Lee New York, the city of pushy, obnoxious, informal and unpretentious loudmouths who get in your face and “tell it like it is.”

Donald Trump is the apotheosis of the caricature—he’s the zillionaire with the guts to say what the average Joe says, the guy in the $10,000 suit who prefers hot dogs to caviar and doesn’t like losers or cripples or captured soldiers, the world leader with the outerborough accent who loves a winner even if the winner is a monstrous dictator. Jeb Bush released a commercial openly calling Trump a jerk. Like Cruz, Bush seems to have misread the Trump appeal. An ad like that is an ad for Trump. A great many people in America in 2016 appear to think that an out-and-out, unapologetic jerk from the Big Apple is just what this country needs. After all, as the song says, if he can make it there, he’ll make it anywhere.




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