That doesn’t mean I can’t enjoy a little back and forth between the two probable 2016 presidential candidates. Especially when one absolutely hammers the other over their arrogance about what “being a conservative” actually means.
It began on Sunday when Cruz made comments about Paul’s take on using military force to establish “strength” globally, saying, “I agree with him that we should be very reluctant to deploy military force aboard. But I think there is a vital role, just as Ronald Reagan did. When Ronald Reagan called the Soviet Union an ‘evil empire,’ when he stood in front of the Brandenburg Gate and said, ‘Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall,’ those words changed the course of history. The United States has a responsibility to defend our values.”
Basically, “I have the same values as Ronald Reagan.” You know, the “conservative hero” all Republicans blindly follow – even though he nearly quadrupled our national debt, offered amnesty for 3 million new Americans and raised taxes.
Well, Paul shot back in an op-ed, writing, “Every Republican likes to think he or she is the next Ronald Reagan. Some who say this do so for lack of their own ideas and agenda. Reagan was a great leader and President. But too often people make him into something he wasn’t in order to serve their own political purposes.”
“I don’t claim to be the next Ronald Reagan nor do I attempt to disparage fellow Republicans as not being sufficiently Reaganesque,” Paul continued. “But I will remind anyone who thinks we will win elections by trashing previous Republican nominees or holding oneself out as some paragon in the mold of Reagan, that splintering the party is not the route to victory.”
Though he didn’t use Cruz’s name directly, it’s clear who he was addressing.
And while I don’t often agree with Paul, I did enjoy the line where he said, “Too often people make him into something he wasn’t in order to serve their own political purposes.”
Which is exactly right. Going by current tea party values, Reagan is closer to being a Democrat than a tea party Republican. Paul would be wise to realize that as well.
It’s clear that going forward, if these two do decide to run for president, things will get very ugly between the two.
And personally, I cannot wait.