Republican presidential candidate Sen. Ted Cruz fancies himself some sort of “super Christian” and huge defender of Israel. If there’s one thing Cruz does well it’s pander to evangelicals. He’s practically built his entire career off of doing it.
So you would think such a “staunch defender of Israel” wouldn’t want anything to do with anyone who was even remotely anti-Semitic, right?
Apparently not if you’re Ted Cruz.
Recently Cruz has gotten himself into some hot water with a few Jewish groups over an endorsement he embraced, then defended, from a radical pastor who thinks Jewish people need to be converted to Christianity or be killed by a “hunter” sent by God. In fact, this pastor referred to Adolf Hitler as one of those “hunters.”
Again, Cruz defended that endorsement.
And he didn’t stop there. Cruz also boasted on his website about getting the endorsement of Ted Nugent. You know, the same Ted Nugent who once called me a ‘lying punk’ then embarrassed himself trying to back it up. Well, Mr. Nugent recently shared a very anti-Semitic meme accusing Jewish people of being behind gun control. The meme literally called former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, “Jew York City Mayor.”
Again, Nugent shared a blatantly anti-Semitic meme – and defended sharing it.
As Rachel Maddow puts it, Cruz now has to own this – which would be rather unusual for a supposedly “pro-Israel” Republican.
“If you’re Senator Cruz and you put this up on your website proudly embracing an endorsement from Ted Nugent, showing off, campaigning even tonight on the fact that you are the choice for president of Ted Nugent, then you do kind of own this. Just like you own the guy who said that God sent Hitler to kill all the Jews, because you campaigned on his endorsement, too.”
And she’s absolutely right.
I don’t even know how you rationally defend this if you’re Cruz. Then again, he’s a Republican so he probably doesn’t have to worry too much about trying to explain this rationally.
This isn’t a situation where there’s some sort of “gray area.” The pastor said, flat-out, that Hitler was a “hunter” sent by God to kill Jews. He also says that Jewish people who do not convert to Christianity will once again be “hunted” and killed. And Ted Nugent, without a doubt, shared a very anti-Semitic meme that referred to Michael Bloomberg as the mayor of “Jew York City.”
But Cruz wants to continue to claim he’s a defender of Israel? How can someone defend Israel while embracing anti-Semitic people?
Then again, when it comes to Israel, Republicans only use the country to get votes by pandering to the religious right. They paint themselves as “defenders of Israel” to the evangelicals who see it as a holy land – not because they have any particular fondness for Jewish people.
It’s all politics.
Though if Republicans were serious about defending Israel, they would be slamming Cruz over embracing these two endorsements. They won’t, because they’re hypocrites. And it’s unlikely Cruz will ever condemn either man unless he thinks doing so would benefit him politically. I’m sure he would love for the people who support Nugent to vote for him, and I don’t expect the Texas senator to grow a spine anytime soon.
Watch the video below via MSNBC: