Ted Cruz Will Die So That You May Live
Ted Cruz was always going to have lonely questions for God, regardless of how he lost. No recent candidate has more visibly wrestled with Messianic uncertainty about whether he actually was the Creator or was merely anointed by him, so any fallibility was bound to occasion at least one night of Nixon-esque recrimination and self-pity cast down a darkened corridor.
It could have been worse.
Losing to Donald Trump — an inhuman orange-and-corn-silk caricature summoned to life by the syncretic magic of heaving a pumpkin pie into the face of a scarecrow — was bad. Losing to him in evangelical, heartland Indiana was worse. Losing to him there after a morning rant castigating him as a pathologically lying sex imp spikes the needle on the Grand Schadenfreude Scale.
But to really redline the needle on that scale will take something more. It will take Ted Cruz walking away from this year with the certitude that he is predestined to become the nominee in 2020. And then, finally clear of the rest of the Republican field, he will stand alone in the general election, getting whipped like a rented mule.
That’s the destiny a chosen candidate like Ted Cruz deserves. It can still be his.
It’s important to remember that Ted Cruz was never expected to come this far in any venue outside his mind.
Both the GOP big-donor class and the media’s big haircut class picked Jeb Bush from the start, with either Scott Walker or Marco Rubio as realistic challengers. Cruz would siphon off the fundamentalist vote until the establishment closed ranks around a candidate and drove him from the race. It’s a testament both to Cruz’s appeal and his thoughts about reproductive rights that he was neither anyone’s Plan A nor their Plan B.
Iowa’s February 1st caucus was meant for Scott Walker, governor of neighboring Wisconsin. Instead, his campaign became a hysterical mess by the start of September. Three weeks later, it was gone. Meanwhile, everyone assumed that heir apparent Jeb Bush would be given New Hampshire in the same way that first-born English princes are just sort of given Wales. We all know what happened to him.
Cruz never really factored into any of this, by his own admission. In August of last year, his team outlined their intention to win the “SEC Primary,” the collection of Southern Super Tuesday states that, along with Texas, would give him enough proportionally assigned delegates to boot other hardline religious conservatives from the race. Cruz envisioned a repeat of the Romney-Santorum 2012 showdown, with him edging out the weasel-worded establishment compromiser via his brand, elocution and networked evangelical get-out-the-vote game.
But, like a variation on an old joke, the best way to make a thug laugh is to make a plan. Donald Trump tore the hearts out of the GOP primary campaigns and held them aloft, burning in his hand, while he stood there cackling like Mola Ram. He rolled up nearly every state in the SEC Primary, including Georgia, where Cruz should have had an advantage. He vivisected every conventional-wisdom strategy and nearly every contender.
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- BIG MAGA MAD