The esoteric exhortations of Jan. 6 from Mr. Cruz, supposedly in support of preserving democracy, also just happened to occur while a fund-raising message was dispatched in his name. (“Ted Cruz here. I’m leading the fight to reject electors from key states unless there is an emergency audit of the election results. Will you stand with me?”) The message went out around the time that the Capitol was breached by those who probably believed Mr. Cruz’s relentless, phony allegations.
Until last Wednesday, I wasn’t sure that anything or anyone could ever put an end to this man’s self-serving sins and long trail of deceptions and obfuscations. As we all know, they have left his wife, his father and numerous colleagues flattened under one bus or another in the service of his ambition. (History may note that Senator Lindsey Graham, himself a breathtaking hypocrite, once joked, “If you killed Ted Cruz on the floor of the Senate, and the trial was in the Senate, nobody would convict you.”)
But maybe, just maybe, Mr. Cruz has finally overreached with this latest power grab, which is correctly seen as an attempt to corral Mr. Trump’s base for his own 2024 presidential ambitions. This time, however, Mr. Cruz was spinning, obfuscating and demagoguing to assist in efforts to overturn the will of the voters for his own ends.
Mr. Cruz has been able to use his pseudo-intellectualism and his Ivy League pedigree as a cudgel. He may be a snake, his supporters (might) admit, but he could go toe to toe with liberal elites because he, too, went to Princeton (cum laude), went to Harvard Law School (magna cum laude), was an editor of the Harvard Law Review and clerked for Supreme Court Chief Justice William Rehnquist. Mr. Cruz was not some seditionist in a MAGA hat (or a Viking costume); he styled himself as a deep thinker who could get the better of lefties from those pointy headed schools. He could straddle both worlds — ivory towers and Tea Party confabs — and exploit both to his advantage.
Today, though, his credentials aren’t just useless; they condemn him. Any decent soul might ask: If you are so smart, how come you are using that fancy education to subvert the Constitution you’ve long purported to love? Shouldn’t you have known better? But, of course, Mr. Cruz did know better; he just didn’t care. And he believed, wrongly I hope, that his supporters wouldn’t either.