During his remarks before the Texas Republican delegation Thursday morning, Texas Republican Senator Ted Cruz defiantly defended his Wednesday night convention speech in which he declined to endorse Donald Trump for president. One angry Trump supporter in the audience asked Cruz why he wasn’t honoring his pledge to support the eventual Republican nominee. “I will tell you, when I stood on that debate stage and they asked every candidate there, ‘If you don’t win, will you support the nominee,’ I raised my hand and I raised my hand enthusiastically with full intention of doing exactly that,” Cruz responded. “And I’ll tell you the day that pledge was abrogated,” he continued. “The day that was abrogated was the day this became personal.” Cruz insisted that he wasn’t there to attack or criticized Donald Trump. “But I’ll just give you this response: I am not in the habit of supporting people who attack my wife and attack my father. That pledge was not a blanket commitment that if you go and slander and attack Heidi, that I’m going to nonetheless come like a servile puppy dog and say, ‘Thank you very much for maligning my wife and maligning my father.’” “This is politics, you got to get over it,” yelled an angry Trump supporter. “No, this is not politics,” Cruz retorted. “I will tell the truth. I will not malign, I will not insult, I will tell the truth. This is not a game, this is not politics. Right and wrong matters. We have not abandoned who we are in this country.” ...Unfortunately, so many these days don't understand Principle....just pledge, pledge, pledge allegiance to all unworthiness. We'll cover more of that in just a moment...
In beginning his remarks today, Cruz said, “I recognize there are some folks here and elsewhere at the convention who are not happy with me. That’s OK." He called it "troubling" that he was booed by "partisans" when he told the convention to vote for candidates in whom they believe.
“What I wanted to do last night is lay out the principles I believe we stand for as Republicans,” he went on to say. “In that speech last night I did not say a single negative word against Donald Trump.”
Truly, in a party full of cowards, Cruz stands apart...but it takes a special kind of badassery
What shouldn’t be lost in the kerfuffle is that the speech he gave was a well-delivered distillation of conservative ideas that went well beyond the strikes on Trump. In contrast to what’s been going on, it sounded inclusive.Fact is, Ted Cruz had his Vito Corleone moment...and Trump and the RNC hate it didn’t backfire.
Cruz also made a strong case for religious liberty — for “Christians, Jews, Muslims, and Atheists” — and for federalism, mentioning a pot legalization state like Colorado. All that talk about the Constitution offended Trump’s fans because they know well the candidate has little, if any, interest in preserving the document. The phrase “vote your conscience” literally provoked boos from the GOP nominee’s fans.
The same day Cruz angered Trump supporters by not honoring a silly, political pledge to endorse the GOP nominee, Trump was quoted in a New York Times interview praising another authoritarian and asserting that he would ignore international treaties signed by the United States.
So while it takes guts to pull off what Cruz did, there wasn’t much downside politically. It seems unlikely that a Trump victory would mean an end of his Senate career. If 2016 ends up being a disaster for his party — and, right now, it’s a good bet it will — Cruz will be the only major Republican to emerge from the Trump fiasco with his principles largely intact.
Related links: Cruz Defends Speech, Spars With Trump Supporters in Explosive Meeting With Texas Delegation
Ted Cruz’s Defiant Message After RNC Speech: “I Will Not Be A Servile Puppy Dog”