Let’s start this out by asking a really simple question: Was anyone reading this surprised that the GOP-led Senate voted to acquit President Trump in this past week’s show trial?
If you’re like me, it went exactly as you expected. There was never a threat of the morally bankrupt Republican lemmings falling out of lockstep with their leader.
With that in mind, what does the acquittal of Donald Trump mean for our nation? While we know and have seen that it’s cause for celebration among his fervent cult base, we have also seen the immediate call for retribution.
Because he yielded to his conscience over party and sided with Democrats during the trial, Utah Senator Mitt Romney has been roundly attacked by the Trump mob, with drunken frat-boy bootlick, Florida Representative Matt Gaetz calling for his removal from the Republican Party.
We also saw the removal of key impeachment trial witnesses, U.S. ambassador to the European Union Gordon Sondland, and national security aide Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman.
We were told there would be a price to pay for speaking a truth that proved inconvenient to the Trump narrative. Now we see what that means.
Trump and his band of sycophants are out for blood. This is no longer a free republic, in their view, but a monarchy, and there will be no dissention. There will be no betrayal of the king, for any reason. Not for patriotism. Not for love of country. Not for the rule of law.
We are in truly treacherous territory. We’ve reached a point in our nation’s history where the great experiment is in peril. How should we react? Do we simply curl up and watch the republic burn? Do we wash our hands of it all?
Or do we call each traitor out by name?
I’m going to call every coward out by name. For those who betrayed their oaths, their duties, and our trust, I will name them. I will do my part to leave a mark, a record of their retreat and complicity.
This week, we’ll talk about Texas Senator Ted Cruz.
What I’ve discovered in the years since Cruz’s 2016 losing bid for the presidency is that quite a few of those devoted “Cruzahs” have seamlessly morphed into compliant and equally devoted Trump apologists. This move mirrors that of Cruz, himself, and highlights the growing cult of personality trap our nation has fallen into.
Not all is lost, however. I’ve seen some cracks in the façade, as former Cruz devotees have watched the man’s descent into wretched Trumpism, and have willingly confessed their shame.
Kudos to you all, as I will confess my own.
I was a Cruz fan for quite a while. When he announced that he was running for the presidency in 2015, I wasn’t mad. I was thrilled!
I bought the whole act, hook, line and sinker. I was awed by his Constitutional zeal and conservative mores. I was sure that he was just the type of bold leader we needed to clean up the travesty that was the Obama years.
Of course, those who know me, know I’ve long been a firm supporter of former Texas Governor Rick Perry (more on that in the coming weeks), so when he entered the race, Cruz was pushed back to a very close second choice.
Cruz’s appeal lessened for me, dramatically, when he became Donald Trump’s prison wife during the primaries. He stepped and fetched for the clownish reality host so much on the trail, that it bordered on parody.
We later learned, by Cruz’s own admission, that he was so complimentary to Trump because he’d hoped that when Trump washed out of the overcrowded field of GOP contenders, that his fans would equate to primary votes for Cruz.
That didn’t happen.
During what became an ugly primary fight between Trump and Cruz, we saw Trump and his team do what they’ve become best known for: attack and demean.
And no, there was no bottom to the behavior. They went after Cruz’s family.
Trump called on pal, David Pecker, and his outlet, The National Enquirer, to spread stories of multiple extramarital affairs by Cruz. They also accused his father, Rafael Cruz, of being involved in the murder of President John F. Kennedy.
Cruz’s wife, Heidi, was also attacked, as Trump and his supporters insulted her looks and spread stories of an alleged mental breakdown.
Any real man would stand up for his family. Any principled man would not only defend himself, but would take careful note of the character of one who would pull off such nonsense, and would react, accordingly.
Cruz had one shining moment, where he instructed his followers to vote their conscience before the 2016 election. He could have stood on that and salvaged his reputation, at least, to some small degree.
He is a full-on Trumpian lackey. He is the senatorial equivalent of Renfield to Trump’s Count Dracula.
I can’t recall any strong stance Ted Cruz has taken since 2016 that was not simply toeing the MAGA line. His social media is a disappointing goulash of quips and odes to all things Trump. It’s as if that great mind he’d conned so many (including me) into believing he possessed has been vacuumed out and replaced with Trump-branded steaks and water.
On January 31, instead of addressing the upcoming vote on charges against President Trump, Cruz dutifully detailed the imagined case against Democratic presidential hopeful Joe Biden, and his son, Hunter Biden.
Attention-seeker that he is, Cruz also made multiple comic appearances before the media during the course of the trial, appealing to the public, in the most cringe-worthy fashion, to focus on those who were not on trial, and who have no bearing over our nation’s direction, at this point.
— The Hill (@thehill) January 30, 2020
He has played his part well, providing no actual leadership. He is a follower. He is complicit in what Donald Trump is doing to our nation.
Ted Cruz, like almost every other Republican in the Senate has actively worked to give away his authority as a member of one of three co-equal branches of government.
We have to ask ourselves if the goal is to do away with Congress, while centralizing control of the government to the executive branch?
That’s how it appears, but that’s not how our founders intended it to be.
Ted Cruz is a coward, but like all cowards, he finds his security in the pack of likewise spineless enablers.
If we are to save our republic, we must be honest about those we once held in high regard.
Ted Cruz’s complicity in creating a president with unchecked, unrestrained power should not be forgotten.