January 25, 2016

AND THEY DON'T MAKE GOOD PRESIDENTS (profanity alert):

Is Ted Cruz Really an Awful, Terrible Jerk?  (Tim Murphy and David Corn, Jan. 25, 2016, Mother Jones)

With the bromance between Ted Cruz and Donald Trump over, the mogul turned GOP front-runner has begun trash talking the senator from Texas. "He's a nasty guy," Trump recently huffed. "Nobody likes him. Nobody in Congress likes him. Nobody likes him anywhere once they get to know him." For members of the politerati, this was no revelation. As Cruz has quickly climbed the political ladder, he has left a long line of associates who complain, without much prompting, that he is an insufferable schmuck.

A prominent aide to George W. Bush's 2000 campaign could barely contain himself when we asked him to discuss Cruz, who worked in the campaign's policy shop. This person described Cruz as hyper-arrogant and widely despised, and he emphasized--over and over--that the pervasive dislike of Cruz within the Bush ranks had nothing to do with ideology. (Cruz, he noted, never objected to Bush's call for compassionate conservatism, immigration reform, and national education standards, and no one on the campaign regarded him as an ideologue.) The problem was simple: his personality.

"Ted thought he was an expert on everything," says this campaign veteran, who asked not to be named. "He was a smart and talented guy, but completely taken with himself and his own ideas. He would offer up opinions on everything, even matters outside his portfolio. He was a policy guy, but he would push his ideas on campaign strategy. He would send memos on everything to everyone. He would come to meetings where he wasn't invited--and wasn't wanted." In fact, this Bush alum recalls, "the quickest way for a meeting to end would be for Ted to come in. People would want out of that meeting. People wouldn't go to a meeting if they knew he would be there. It was his inability to be part of the team. That's exactly what he was: a big [********]."

The Bush vet goes on: "I don't know anyone who had a decent relationship with Cruz." And when Bush became president, his top campaign aides agreed Cruz should not be offered a job in the White House. "No one wanted to work with him," this source remembers. "George W. Bush couldn't stand the guy." This person adds, "It's a real quandary for Bush campaign people: Trump versus Cruz, who to vote for? And it would be a big quandary even if it's Cruz versus Hillary Clinton. That's how much they cannot stand him."

It may be easy for someone to lob anonymous shots at Cruz. But there are plenty of others, including prominent Republicans, who have not been shy about sharing their feelings about Cruz on the record. Here is a quick guide to Cruz's loudest detractors...

Posted by at January 25, 2016 1:30 PM

  

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