Friday, April 1, 2016

Ted Cruz, false hope

The unctuous Texan is squandering a great chance handed to him by Stop-Trump Republicans

[Bloggers note: This is exactly how Mitt Romney lost in 2012 - by preaching the Gospel. Not that I personally have anything against that, but you won't win elections by doing so. There are to many atheists, agnostics and others, as well as liberals who fear your personal belief will take away their "right" to things like abortion, gay marriage, etc... As a political candidate, you need to tone down your personal beliefs and tweak your speeches to fit the audiences you need to win elections. You need to be honest but not pushy - you need to show you understand even issues you don't personally believe in. Neither Ted Cruz nor Mitt Romney seem able to do this.]

Apr 2nd 2016 | From the print edition

The day Ted Cruz announced he was running for president, in March 2015, he began his speech to thousands of cheering Christian evangelical students, "God bless Liberty University.”

One year later to the day, Cruz stood in midtown Manhattan under crystal chandeliers and addressed a suit-clad crowd much the same way, "God bless the great state of New York.”

Cruz’s unapologetic brand of Christian conservatism hasn’t changed much in the past 12 months, but the political terrain of the 2016 campaign has. After meticulously building an evangelical base that delivered Cruz an opening victory in Iowa and helped him amass the second-most delegates to Donald Trump through March, the Texas senator now faces a gantlet of some of the least religious states in the country. As few as four of the remaining states are projected to have a majority-evangelical GOP electorate.

Much has been made over the past few days of Trump's challenges in securing enough delegates to win the nomination. But unless Cruz can quickly make inroads with non-evangelical voters who so far have mostly rejected him, he has little chance of stopping Trump. So far, the candidate who disparaged his rival's "New York values" has shown no sign of tweaking his message to appeal to a less religious coastal electorate, gambling instead that antipathy toward Trump will be enough to draw those voters into his camp.

“You can safely say that his best days are behind him when it comes to the solid evangelical states,” said Tim Malloy, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University poll. “He’s going to have to appeal to people who are not necessarily terribly religious at this point.”

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Ted Cruz 2016 - AP photo

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