The media and establishment Republicans have a perpetual fantasy that conservatives cannot win elections, and they repeatedly cite Barry Goldwater as their example while ignoring two other bits of information. First, Ronald Reagan ran as a conservative in 1980 and did win. Second, the Establishment’s picks of Bob Dole, John McCain, and Mitt Romney all lost. Even George H. W. Bush lost his re-election in 1992 when he ran as his own man instead of the continuation of Ronald Reagan’s Presidency.
The problem both the media and the Establishment in Washington have is that they, like other people, only relate to those who look and sound like them. The conservatives on the campaign trail sound a lot like American voters right now. They gravitate to the issues Americans are concerned about. They talk about the issues like more and more Americans talk to each other about those issues.
In Washington, they do not talk about those issues or talk in those ways. They find it distasteful. As a result, they look at men like Ted Cruz and find him unlikeable, while polls show the electorate finds him likable and Washington neither likable nor relatable. Charles de Gaulle once said that Paris was not really France. Washington is also not America. The values and institutions are different, and presently Washington relates less and less to the American people.