When Ted Cruz was asked the other day about the criticism of Trump by his Senate colleagues Bob Corker and Jeff Flake, the Texan unloaded. “It’s like you’re back in junior high. . . . We’ve got a job to do, dammit, and so all of this nonsense, I got nothing to say on it. Everyone shut up and do your job is my view.”
This is the same Ted Cruz who pointedly refused to shut up in 2016, declining to endorse Trump in his convention speech and making an impassioned plea for the defense of a party of principles, a party of conscience. “We deserve leaders who stand for principle, who unite us all behind shared values, who cast aside anger for love,” he said from the rostrum in Cleveland. “That is the standard we should expect from everybody. And to those listening, please don’t stay home in November. If you love our country and love our children as much as you do, stand and speak, and vote your conscience.”
But now it’s 2017. The base is said to be unhappy with dissent. Breitbart.com will criticize you. Steve Bannon may fund a primary challenger. Dissent is so 2016.