Ted Cruz’ Lame Excuse for His Father

As researchers did up more and more absurd, inane and downright delusional things his father says, Sen. Ted Cruz’ political handlers are being asked to comment. And they’re offering up the same old tired excuses that people always use when they’re caught saying something monumentally stupid and offensive:

This weekend, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) responded to the story Mother Jones published last week that revealed inflammatory remarks made by his father, Rafael Cruz, a Cuban-born, septuagenarian businessman-turned-pastor. Speaking to the North Texas Tea Party last year on behalf of his son, the elder Cruz called President Barack Obama an “outright Marxist” who “seeks to destroy all concept of God.” At that event, Rafael Cruz also urged the crowd to send Obama “back to Kenya.” Or ship him “back to Indonesia,” he said. Asked to comment on his father’s remarks, Sen. Cruz’s office told us, “These selective quotes, taken out of context, mischaracterize the substance of Pastor Cruz’s message.” It added, “Pastor Cruz does not speak for the senator.” Yet after the story was posted, when a Texas television station questioned the senator directly about his father’s statements, Ted Cruz dismissed them as a “joke.” He went on to claim the article was the result of “the politics of personal destruction” and en effort by people “trying to smear [Rafael Cruz] and use that to attack me.”

So let’s tally up the score.

Excuse #1: Those quotes are out of context! And you know what? Sometimes that’s a reasonable statement. Sometimes a quote really is out of context and the context really does change the meaning of it. But when someone claims that a quote is out of context without supplying that context and explaining why the context changes the meaning, you know they’re full of shit.

Excuse #2: “It’s a joke.” Uh, what is? Your dad was joking? I don’t think anyone is going to buy that. It’s a joke that people are criticizing the things he says? No, I’m afraid it isn’t.

Excuse #3: “This is all just people trying to attack me.” Okay. So what? Are the criticisms valid or not? Does your dad say these things or not? And are they vile or not? That’s all that matters, not the motivation of those making the criticisms. And in fact, this is a perfectly legitimate question to ask:

As for attacking the son with the father’s statements, the senator did not explain why it’s unfair to hold him accountable for remarks made by a person Cruz’s campaign routinely deployed as an official surrogate. According to campaign disclosure records, Cruz’s Senate campaign paid Rafael Cruz about $10,000 in traveling expenses in 2012 and 2013. And in August the conservative National Review noted that the father-son duo had forged a “political partnership,” reporting: “Cruz has kept his father, a 74-year-old pastor, involved with his political shop, using him not merely as a confidant and stand-in, but as a special envoy. He is Cruz’s preferred introductory speaker, his best messenger with evangelicals, and his favorite on-air sidekick.”

That makes the extreme things he says absolutely fair game.

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  • Reginald Selkirk

    He must be worried by all this. He forgot to add, “the dog ate my homework.”

  • http://motherwell.livejournal.com/ Raging Bee

    Hey, if old man Cruz doesn’t like his new neighbors, he can bloody well go back to Cuba. Or go comiserate with that other flaming racist George Zimmerman. His role in Republican campaigning only shows how deeply bigoted that whole party is.

  • http://zenoferox.blogspot.com/ Zeno

    “Ted Cruz’ Lame Excuse for a Father”

  • unbound

    Excuse #2 needs the same support as Excuse #1. 9 times out of 10, it’s complete BS…so unless they explain how it is a joke, I tend to ignore all of these Excuses completely.

  • davidworthington

    In fact, every time a person quotes they are removing the passage from a larger discourse, and hence are using the material “out of” context. The important element is whether the person quoting uses the passage in a way that is consistent with the original document/speech.

    Dave

  • Taz

    I’m more interested in his take on his father’s claim that evolution is a communist plot.

  • AsqJames

    Excuse #4: “Pastor Cruz does not speak for the senator.”

    Surrogates – how the hell do they work?

  • raven

    Virginia Lt. Governor race:

    Ralph Northam, Democrat, 55.14%. E.W. Jackson, Republican, 44.49%

    AFAICT, it doesn’t matter in Texas what Ted Cruz or Rafael Cruz says.

    Rafael is another E.W. Jackson, an endless source of false statements and babbling. Both are xian ministers which speaks volumes about what the fundie perversion of xianity in the USA has degenerated into, a fact free hate festival.

    Jackson, in a (arguably) slightly saner state still got 44% of the vote.

    You could replace Ted Cruz with Darth Vader, Hannibal Lector, Captain Hook, Sauron, or a carboard cutout. As long as it hated the right groups and had the right tribal markers, they would be elected senator in Texas right now.

  • rory

    The last passage cited is really the one that does it for me. I haven’t followed this issue that closely, and I had the impression that this was a bit of a gotcha game in which Ted was being pilloried for the remarks of his moonbat dad. But if the pastor acts as an official, on the books spokesperson, then his remarks are very germane. And I guess even if dear old dad was just ranting in no official capacity, at this point Ted should still have repudiated the remarks if he meant to do so. Things being as they are I have no problem with the pastor becoming a millstone around his son’s neck. Thanks for informing me, Ed.

  • http://www.pandasthumb.org Area Man

    “Or ship him “back to Indonesia,” he said.”

    Or whichever Pacific islands he’s from.

  • Trebuchet

    Papa Cruz, meet Papa Gibson. At least Mel isn’t holding, or running for, office.

    The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.

  • http://www.rodlamkey.net reverendrodney

    This guy is a Christian pastor? Okay, swim with this:

    “You shall not bow down to them or serve them; for I the Lord your God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me.”

    Deuteronomy 5:9

  • Chiroptera

    Jeez. This is almost becoming an internet meme:

    Okay, in what context would “President Barack Obama [is] an “outright Marxist” who “seeks to destroy all concept of God” who should be sent “back to Kenya” or shipped “back to Indonesia” be appropriate comments to make?

  • colnago80

    Re Raging Bee @ #2

    Gee, George Zimmerman must be a libertarian given the viciousness of the Fairfax floozie’ s attack on him.

  • http://drx.typepad.com Dr X

    “Pastor Cruz does not speak for the senator.”

    He threw his father under the bus.