The standing caricature of Ted Cruz is that he is self interested, not really principled. It is kinda hard to deny that today.
He took a brave stand in Cleveland against Trump, telling people to vote their conscience. Nothing with Trump has changed since then, but now Cruz is endorsing.
There has been no apology from Trump about the attacks on Cruz’s wife and father. In fact, after the convention Trump brought them up again.
The only thing that has changed was pressure on Cruz. Donors have pressured him. Conservative interest groups have pressured him. John Cornyn and Mitch McConnell are recruiting people to run against Ted.
In other words, this was a self-interested play.
There comes a moment in elected office when some politicians rationalize that if they do not do something, they may lose. And if they lose, they won’t be able to stay around and fight for the cause. They rationalize that this one cave for election purposes is okay because of the greater good.
That is always the moment a politician ceases being effective and principled. This may be that time for Cruz.
In the meantime, he has caved for no purpose and seemingly confirms the Trumpian critique of Washington: they are all for sale.
That is unfortunate. The only people really pleased with Cruz’s endorsement are his potential 2020 rivals. Cruz just hurt himself for that nomination and will start with less ground than he had yesterday.
Those who always thought he was a self-interested politician now feel vindicated. Those who hate him feel affirmed. And those who stood by him feel betrayed.
Whoever suggested Cruz do this should be fired.