When Ted Cruz’ Applause Lines Don’t Work

Like every politician, Ted Cruz has a standard stump speech full of simpleminded applause lines that are sure to get the crowd whooping and cheering. But that only seems to work when the audience is made up of their fans. Ted Cruz tried those lines in front a union audience and was met with very awkward silence. He even paused every time expecting cheers and got nothing. This is hilarious to watch.

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Palin’s Pointless Appeal

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  • http://mostlyrational.net tacitus

    For someone whose intelligence has been widely feted, he sure hasn’t turned out to be a very smart politician.

  • http://cycleninja.blogspot.com cycleninja

    @tacitus #1

    Agreed, completely.

    My take: if you don’t understand the concept of tailoring your remarks to fit your audience, you fail at basic public speaking.

  • acroyear

    Of course, there’s a key difference between the partyies’ extremes in these kinds of situations. When a reactionary uses stump lines on a liberal audience, they get silence. When a liberal uses these lines on a reactionary audience, they get boos and threats.

  • Sastra

    I’m going to guess that Cruz heard “firefighters” and thought “brave real ‘Murcans.” No way folks who run into burning buildings are going to be nuanced thinkers, amirite?

  • Childermass

    What a moron.

    Abolish the IRS? Like the feds would do without taxes at all. It would just be reopened under a different name. Hint the IRS is just the organization that administers the taxes which Congress passed into law.

    Put IRS people on the border? I am sure some of them can do the job, but: since when do you put accountants in charge of security? (And this is even assuming that putting a bunch of people on the border will solved all our problems.)

  • dugglebogey

    Part of the tea party’s ideological purity requires one to be completely ignorant that different audiences require different approaches.

  • Sastra

    Childermass #5 wrote:

    Put IRS people on the border? I am sure some of them can do the job, but: since when do you put accountants in charge of security?

    The image I had wasn’t of shifting manpower more efficiently, but of showing those damned tax collectors what it’s like to be shot at in the desert during the night.

  • lldayo

    Ted Cruz – Speech for the International Association of Fire Fighters

    Introduce goals of presidency

    We should abolish the IRS! (firm hand motion to show you mean it) (wait for applause and chants of U-S-A, U-S-A….wait for it…..wait for it…..continue waiting….)

  • xuuths

    Yes, tacitus, Cruz is fetid.

  • Doc Bill

    I’m starting to call Cruz “Mr. Sound Bite Do Nothing.”

    Did you know there are more words in the Game of Thrones books than there are in the Bible? That’s a fact.

    What has Cruz actually DONE as a senator? Nothing. What has he done for Texas? Nothing. All he does is drop sound bites.

    He wrote an editorial in today’s Houston Chronicle about needing to beef up NASA, but it’s all sound bites and not a single bit of substance. He said, essentially, that we need to have booster capability to enable us to get to the ISS without relying on Soyuz. He did not say that he was proposing legislation to develop the next generation booster technology. See the difference?

    As we say here in Texas, the guy is all hat and no cattle.

  • Reginald Selkirk

    Doc Bill #10: What has Cruz actually DONE as a senator? Nothing.

    Have you forgotten already how he convinced the House to shut down the government? And his dramatic reading of Dr. Seuss?

  • moarscienceplz

    Testing, …testing, one, two, three,…is this thing on?

  • colnago80

    Re Doc Bill @ #11

    The best part of Cruz’s questioning of the director of NASA was telling him to get out of the earth science business (a code word for stop studying climate change which Cruz says isn’t happening).

    http://goo.gl/fojoNt

    Re #5

    Cruz is a sociopathic demagogue, who, unfortunately, unlike his House colleague Louis Gohmert, ain’t a moron. As I have stated numerous times on this blog, he is the most dangerous man in the Rethuglican Party because he combines high intelligence with his demagoguery. Abolishing the IRS is just an example of such stuff. I seriously doubt that Cruz believes it for a moment. As Brayton says, it’s just an applause line for presentations to the tea baggers.

  • peterh

    I would quibble with “hilarious” only because outside that particular audience there are plenty of rubes who do take Cruz seriously.

  • eric

    Part of the tea party’s ideological purity requires one to be completely ignorant that different audiences require different approaches.

    You jest, but the far right does seem to have a sincere belief that they are 60% of the population rather than something more like 10-20%. My guess is that Cruz’ flop has something to do with this; he didn’t think he needed to change his standard speech for a non-GOP crowd because he thought an “average” crowd with a representative mixture of different political beliefs would be majority conservative.

  • jaybee

    One of the inherent contradictions of Ted Cruz is that his nominal audience, you know, the real ‘mericans that Sarah Palin represents so well, would find very little in common with him on a personal level. He so much represents the elite, the establishment, the slick eggheads that they distrust. All he offers them is reinforcing everything they want to hear, but I’m sure they don’t identify with him. They like having him trumpet their views, but when push comes to shove, I’m sure they’d have no problem shoving him under the bus.

  • http://timgueguen.blogspot.com timgueguen

    jaybee, you can also add the fact he’s half Cuban. The Tea Party types probably claim to like Cubans, but that’s only when they’re safely elsewhere. Take a Tea Partier and drop them in downtown Miami and in about 5 minutes they’d probably be whining about all the Spanish they’d see and hear.

  • lorn

    tacitus @1:

    Oh, please. You forget that IOKIYAAR. That there is no down side for a conservative, and that they advance the cause by failing. Michele Bachmann has made egregious misstatement and hideous assertions, misstatements and assertions that quickly become GOP talking points, the core of her career

    In a few hours a chorus of conservative commentators will note that Ted Cruz was showing remarkable bravery and intestinal fortitude to speak in front of union members and that his efforts are a demonstration of how the GOP is a ‘big tent’ party always reaching out even to groups that might shun them.

    The flip side being an assertion that the union members rudely snubbed Ted and that that demonstrates their lack of civility. No wonder the unions are losing ground … humph.

  • Trebuchet

    He’s now promising to repeal Common Core. You know, a law that doesn’t actually exist.

  • Michael Heath

    Ted Cruz is an idiot, regardless of his educational achievements. This speech is a perfect illustration of his idiocy. There are many other examples.

  • M can help you with that.

    Sastra @ 4 —

    I’m going to guess that Cruz heard “firefighters” and thought “brave real ‘Murcans.” No way folks who run into burning buildings are going to be nuanced thinkers, amirite?

    I think this might be pretty central to what’s going on here. Firefighters are used so often as icons of muscular blue-collar masculinity that someone like Cruz — whose whole schtick is glorifying a set of fetishes connected to ideas of muscular blue-collar masculinity — that he just assumes that the people who (in his mind) embody everything he supports politically must share his agenda.

  • http://www.facebook.com/eo.raptor.3 eoraptor

    Doc Bill @ 10

    I always heard it as all hat and no horse. But then that from my grandfather in Oklahoma.

  • colnago80

    Re Michael Heath @ #20

    Well, everybody who knew Cruz at Harvard or interacted with him says the same thing. Absolutely brilliant. According to retired Law Professor Alan Dershowitz, who had him in his class on Constitutional Law, Cruz was the most brilliant student, along with Elizabeth Warren, he ever had in class and his class attracted the best and the brightest for some 30 years (demand was so great that a putative student had to win a lottery to obtain entrance; now President Obama lost out on the lottery and thus was not able to take the class from Dersh.

    In my opinion, considering Cruz to be an idiot is a dangerous notion, and greatly underestimates a brilliant demagogue and sociopath. IMHO, Cruz has a plan to win the 2016 Rethuglican nomination which consists of being the only teabagger candidate in the running from the get go, depending on the Bushes and the Christies to split the non-teabagger vote in the primaries and caucuses. That’s how McGovern won the Democratic nomination in 1972.20

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

    Hey, at least he didn’t say he couldn’t support them unless they supported Israel. For him, that’s progress!

  • http://artk.typepad.com ArtK

    Ted Cruz was a brilliant law student and impressed his professors. Whether that translates into any other sphere remains to be seen. “Intelligence” is not some universally applied thing. I’m very good at what I do and Ted Cruz would fail at it. Put me in Harvard Law and I’d be lost.

    Is he dangerous? Quite possibly. He can certainly galvanize the extremists into action. He can convince the House that it’s a good idea to shut down the government, despite the inevitable result. The GOP’s popularity did not rise after that little stunt.

    This latest thing shows that, despite any intelligence he may have shown at Harvard, he has little skill at understanding people outside of the ones that agree with him. He hasn’t even hired good people who would tell him that the standard stump speech was a non-starter with this audience. That speaks to bad management and probably a bad case of tunnel vision.

  • http://mostlyrational.net tacitus

    @colnago80

    I disagree that he’s been playing a canny game. He’s alienated most of the party establishment and has very little to show for it so far. It’s not as though there are big money wingnut donors lining up to support a serious run. In my opinion, Rand Paul has been much smarter. He’s been making friends and building bridges, and doing all he can to shed himself of the too-extreme-to-be-elected-president label, while still doing enough to endear himself to the wingnut vote.

    The nominee for the Republican Party is going to need the support of enough of the ordinary rank and file, and as much as they may think they want a rabble-rouser to shake up Washington, what they really want is someone who can beat Hillary Clinton, and they know that is not going to be Ted Cruz.

  • slc1

    Re tacitus @ #26

    He alienated most of the party establishment in Texas when he ran for the Senate and still won the nomination, upsetting the establishment candidate. The point is that if you have Christie, Bush, Paul, etc. all competing for the “establishment” vote and Cruz all alone as the candidate of the tea baggers, he can win with far less then 50%. That’s how McGovern did it in 1972. I agree that his strategy is a long shot but I don’t see any alternative for him. He can’t compete for the votes that Bush et al are going after.

    Re Artk @ #25

    The problem is that getting the people that agree with him motivated to go to the polls and caucuses may be sufficient to prevail in a divided field.

  • dingojack

    SLC1 – reversion?

    :( Dingo

  • ospalh

    @cycleninja, #2

    Tailoring his speech? When you cuts out anything anti-union, and anti-government (you know, with fire brigades organized by (municipal) governments and all), is there anything left of Ted Cruz? That the anti-immigrant rhetoric would’t work was’t that clear from a distance, but it still it didn’t. (Even if the international of “International Association of Fire Fighters” means “USA + Canada” not that it’s the kind of union that sings the Internationale.)

  • colnago80

    Re dingojack @ #28

    No, hit the wrong button.

  • Kermit Sansoo

    slc1 et al says: He alienated most of the party establishment in Texas when he ran for the Senate and still won the nomination, upsetting the establishment candidate. The point is that if you have Christie, Bush, Paul, etc. all competing for the “establishment” vote and Cruz all alone as the candidate of the tea baggers, he can win with far less then 50%.

    .

    Seems like that would be a good thing. If your assessment is correct, and he manages to win the nomination, he would be less likely to win the general election than somebody like Bush or Paul.