“Palate cleanser” feels like the wrong term to describe this clip. Three things, though:

1. I did not believe the news cycle would ever get so slow in the Trump era that a Ted Cruz staffer accidentally liking a porn clip on Twitter on his official account would become a story for days. Yet it’s the first thing Dana Bash asks about in today’s interview.

2. He’s totally right on the merits but isn’t this an example of “New York values,” a term of contempt Cruz threw at Trump in the primaries last year? Cruz would say, I’m sure, that “New York values” was aimed at Trump’s big-spending Manhattan-liberal preferences, but let’s not be cute. It was at base a dig at Trump’s libertine playboy youth (and middle age, and advanced middle age) aimed at reminding red-state evangelicals that Trump wasn’t one of them. Turns out they didn’t care.

3. When, precisely, did we enter the alternate reality in which a headline like this is possible?

How can we get back to the other timeline in which Trump is still a Democrat, “Shazaam” is a real movie, and the words “Ted Cruz” and “dildos” would never appear in print within a thousand words of each other?

2017, man. By the way, it’s undeniably true that Cruz is one of the most libertarian members of the Senate, as he claims here, but that says more about how paltry the libertarian presence is in that chamber than it does about Cruz’s politics. Actual libertarians are forever ready to ding him for his sins against the faith. And there are many.