The attacks on Ted Cruz

NRO Editorial:
Senate Democrats have taken to the New York Timesto express their displeasure with their uppity new colleague Ted Cruz, the Texas Republican whose robust examination of Chuck Hagel’s record they find insufficiently decorous. Warning: The “M-word” is used.


Cruz seems to have drawn the Tailgunner Joe comparisons largely for two statements selectively plucked from what was a sustained and substantive examination before the Senate Armed Services Committee of Hagel’s dubious record in advance of the vote on his nomination. Let’s take them one at a time.

It was “truly extraordinary,” Cruz remarked, that the government of Iran “formally and publicly prais[ed] the nomination of a defense secretary.” He also called it “unprecedented” that a nation like Iran was “publicly celebrating” the prospect of a Hagel-run Pentagon. Cruz may have been referring to the Iranian state-run press, who ran a “news” piece entitled “Obama expected to nominate anti-Israel Hagel as secretary of defense.” Or he may have been referring to a statement made by a spokesman for Iran’s Foreign Ministry, who, when asked a question about Hagel’s views on Israel and U.S. sanctions in the context of his confirmation prospects, opaquely replied, “We hope there will be practical changes in American foreign policy and that Washington becomes respectful of the rights of nations.”


Nor does one have to take Tehran’s word for it. Indeed, Cruz spent most of his allotted time at Hagel’s confirmation hearing establishing this fact by rehearsing for Hagel his own past statements and insinuations to this effect, all on the record, from the floor of the United States Senate to the broadcasts of Al Jazeera. Cruz was not here working on innuendo or guilt by association. He was building a case, in context, and he gave the accused every opportunity to defend himself.

On to the second statement....

Lamenting that Hagel’s unwillingness to offer a similar level of cooperation left the Senate in the dark about the sources of Hagel’s compensation, Cruz offered a stylized hypothetical. “He could not even say that the $200,000 he received [for speeches and appearances] did not come directly from a foreign government,” Cruz said. “It is at a minimum relevant to know if that $200,000 deposited in his bank account came directly from Saudi Arabia, came directly from North Korea.”

Cruz’s critics paint this as part of the “inference and innuendo,” the “guilt by association” that are the hallmarks of their reductive conception of McCarthyism. But of course it is no such thing. It is ridiculous to think that Cruz was implying any connection between Hagel and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea — or much of anything at all. Cruz’s lament is about what we don’t know as a result of Hagel’s intransigence — namely, whether he’s been by paid by forces antithetic to American interests — not about what we do know. Cruz might have just as representatively said, “It is at a minimum relevant to know if that $200,000 deposited in his bank account came directly from the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants or the Romulan Star Empire.”

The attacks on Cruz seem coordinated by Democrats using liberal journalist as their attack dogs.  I think they are happening because Cruz has been making effective arguments against Hagel.  I also see some Chicago style Alinsky tactics aimed at Cruz to try to shut him up before he upends Obama's second term.  I hope he continues to fight including fighting the bogus McCarthyism meme being pushed by liberals.

I have noticed that Lindsey Graham has also gotten some push back in the media for his Hagel criticism as well as for his Benghazi questions.

What I find hard to understand is why the media is so supportive of a loser like Hagel.  They were used by Hagel for a trial balloon on a presidential run in 2008 and they guy never could break through the one percent "barrier" in approval.  The rest of the country rejected him so why is the media so keen to have him, and why are they ignoring his obvious defects?


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