Leverage: don’t make deals without it. --Donald Trump, The Art of the Deal, 1987
It's tempting to go Machiavellian during primaries. Even during general elections after primaries. But there's a great danger for the grassroots.
If we don't hold candidates accountable during the race when we have all the leverage, how can we possibly hold office-holders accountable?
Check out this paragraph from the Washington Post:
Cruz offered a lawyerly defense of his campaign’s actions, blaming media reporting for the mistake. He also apologized to Carson. But the low-key retired neurosurgeon sliced apart Cruz’s defense with a quiet but deadly response that completely undermined the senator’s argument.
I'll give you that WaPo is no Cruz fan. But they're also not Trump fans. And they think Carson's lost his once-great mind.
But to say the Washington Post is in bed with the GOP establishment would be pretty bold. They're not. The Washington Post is in bed with the Clinton establishment. And the Clinton establishment thinks Cruz is their most beatable opponent. Hillary would love to see Ted Cruz win the GOP nomination. (Even though you and I know she might regret it.)
So that paragraph from WaPo is probably an honest assessment.
"Lawerly" is not a good sign. But "lawerly" rings true, doesn't it?
As a Heritage Action Sentinel I'm charged with holding elected officials accountable. To some degree that means getting around their weasel words and lawerly justifications.
I agree that Ted Cruz's ideological positions are pure. No doubt.
But his campaign's behavior in Iowa was less than honorable. Just ask Dr. Carson.
I'm not asking Senator Cruz to change any of his positions (although he might want to change the order of precedence). I am asking that he change his tactics. And maybe some of his campaign staff.
And you and I have a lot of options between now and the Missouri primary. That's our leverage for accountability. I plan to use mine.
Bottom line: if you don't hold candidates accountable, don't bother trying to hold elected officials accountable. You're wasting your time. They know you'll cave.