Texas Senator Ted Cruz is Quickly Becoming the Next Sarah Palin — and That’s a Great Thing

tedcruz-sadPolitics is a funny thing because it seems many Americans have a very short attention span when it comes to the subject.  Recent history proves that.

For eight years, we had President Bush and a mostly Republican-controlled Congress running this country into the ground.  We finally get rid of him in 2008.  Finally we had a Democratic president and Congress (well, for a handful of months until Ted Kennedy died).  So, what do the American people do because Obama didn’t wave a magic wand the moment he got into office and fix our giant economic mess immediately?

They give power back to Republicans in the House of Representatives and filibuster power in the Senate, which then basically prevents President Obama and Democrats from getting anything done.  The party which led us into the mess we were angry at Obama for not fixing fast enough was the same party the American people gave power back to, which then allowed them to block much of what the president had hoped to accomplish.  Heck, remember when Sarah Palin was potentially one heartbeat away from the presidency?  Had McCain won, that would have been the reality.  Even soon after the 2008 election she was the hottest name within the Republican party (and tea party movement) and almost a sure bet to be the 2012 Republican nominee for president.

She was the darling of all things conservative.

Well, now she’s nothing more than an infrequent on again off again Fox News contributor and reality television “star” on a new show debuting on a channel that only 25% of American households receive.

Hey, Senator Cruz, take a good look — you’re headed in that same direction.

Granted, Ted Cruz still remains very popular with tea party Republicans and what they’re now calling the “ultra-conservatives.”  But it wasn’t too long ago that Ted Cruz was becoming the face of the Republican party.  Hell, he led the way when it came to shutting down our government.

Think about that for a moment: a senator who hasn’t been in office for a year gained so much power within his own party that he influenced the House of Representatives to the point that Speaker Boehner had to cave to his influence, shutting down our government.

But lately something interesting has been happening — you don’t see much about Ted Cruz anymore.  In fact, you’re seeing other Republicans taking center stage again like John Boehner, Paul Ryan, Eric Cantor, Chris Christie and Rand Paul (though I wouldn’t call Paul a leading Republican, but he was the tea party favorite before Cruz).

Yet when it comes to Cruz, it seems he’s being aggressively marginalized by Republicans.  Sure, he’s still out there making his asinine comments and obsessing about “Obamacare,” but you don’t see many leading Republicans standing with him anymore.

The recent budget deal and future debt ceiling “plan” by Republicans is more or less being done without any involvement from Cruz whatsoever.

A few months back, Cruz led the way to shut down our government.  Fast forward to present day and when a budget deal was agreed upon to avoid another shutdown, nobody cared what Cruz thought about it.

In a year he’s gone from being a newly elected senator, rising from nowhere to being the face of the Republican party — to just another senator being marginalized by Republicans with real power.  And I don’t believe this is being done by accident.  I honestly believe this is a conscious effort by Republicans to ignore the asinine nature of Cruz.

Much like most Republicans have done with Sarah Palin.  Trust me, if Cruz would quit like Palin did, his future within the GOP would be very similar to hers.  Well, probably worse.  I don’t see Cruz starring in a reality TV show anytime soon.

Now I’m not saying Cruz won’t pop up now and again, catching a headline here and there, but I believe it’s pretty clear that there’s a direct effort within the Republican party to prevent Ted Cruz from having a leading voice (and presence) within the GOP.  And for sanity’s sake, that’s a great thing to know.

Image via AP

Allen Clifton

Allen Clifton is a native Texan who now lives in the Austin area. He has a degree in Political Science from Sam Houston State University. Allen is a co-founder of Forward Progressives and creator of the popular Right Off A Cliff column and Facebook page. Be sure to follow Allen on Twitter and Facebook, and subscribe to his channel on YouTube as well.

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  • Veritas vos Liberabit

    Gone into the chasm of oblivion along with his compatriot, Marco Rubio!

  • willydedog

    These people are nothing more than political herpes – they pop up unexpectedly, usually at the worst possible times, keep you from doing what needs to be done, and then lie dormant for who knows how long.

    • Bookwench

      Great analogy:-)

  • sherry06053

    That would be great, but I think you are wrong. I think the more they talk, the more ammo they give to the Democrats. What they are doing it waiting it out until it’s closer to election time. We will start hearing from them again when it comes to the debt ceiling and louder and louder until the election. Congress is on vacation now, and nothing is happening anyway. Why waste headlines? When Obama first got elected, he focused on the ACA and Republicans complained that he didn’t focus on jobs. Everything that Obama has done to try to make good on his campaign promises for more jobs, have been blocked. Remember investing in the infrastructure? That is the Obama we voted for, but Republicans never accepted his reelection. No…Cruz is still there…2014 is going to be their last stand and they have everything riding on it. Expect a full fledged, well financed attack. I wish we could stop them from lying, but they fight nasty and twist the truth. I do think the public is getting wiser, but if they win any more seats and the Democrats lose any, there are going to be a lot more hungry people in this country. Make sure you vote in 2014 so that doesn’t happen!
    .

    • Joe Blunt Ltp

      Totally agree here with you Sherry. The GOP is keeping their power dry until the last moment possible. This is now a ‘keep your head down’ period where they do not want to attract attention or the ire of the general electorate. The more time that passes before they crank up the campaign, the less the public will remember the latest budgetary shenanigans. I think it is possible Cruz will sit out the 2016 presidential run, but he may well be aiming at 2020. If he goes along and gets along with his GOP comrades for a few years, wins reelection to the senate, he will be welcomed into the fold as the darling he has been.

  • VALERIE MARTIN

    All the Democrats have to do is sit back……….
    Grab a snack & watch them implode.
    Just let them keep talking.
    The radical extremists control the party now
    and Americans will NEVER elect ANY of them.
    Sarah? Rand? Raphael? Bobby? Marco?
    OH! I cannot wait for the debates!
    This is gonna be so much FUN!

    All we have to do is show up & VOTE
    my friends.
    VOTE in 2014 & 2016

  • surfjac

    “Heck, remember when Sarah Palin was potentially one heartbeat away from the presidency?”
    That sure was a scary part of the equation wasn’t it? I always considered it a matter of Sen. McCain’s age and never considered the possibility of an “accident” while shopping for carpets or something until recently.

    • motherunit

      Palin seemed so nakedly hungry for the presidency (never mind the VP slot, she didn’t even know what that job entailed). Had the unthinkable happened, and the GOP had won in 2008, an “accident” would not have surprised me one bit.

  • Nick Wride

    Cruz is like a pimple, popping up unexpectedly and just as easy to get rid of. Just let the insanity pour out of his Koch hole for a while.

  • EL

    I think it’s telling that “leaders” of the far right can come from nowhere (no experience, no intelligence) and then subside just as quickly. In the right, there’s no “there” there.

  • FD Brian

    What is funny about republicans is that instead of doing something to garner favor with people that vote, they instead make it harder for people to vote against them.

  • Peter Simatos

    He has a long way to go to be Palin or Bachman. He really has to practice his deer in the headlights stare. I saw promise during his green eggs and ham fillibuster

  • Carlos M. Morales

    Cruz has become the punch line to a bad joke ..

  • Joe Blunt Ltp

    While I don’t agree with Mr Clifton on that Cruz has permanently lost his mojo with his party, I am sharing this story. The most valuable part to me is the concise summary of events leading to our current state of GOP obstruction in congress. I wish more writers would preface their posts with this simple reminder of the facts as they are.

  • Well course they were in the closet together remember? One of the most nauseating pictures I have ever seen.