A lot of hoopla has been made of Ted Cruz's non-endorsement of Trump after vowing that he would support the eventual nominee early on in the race. In fact,
most were concerned with whether or not Trump would endorse the eventual nominee, fearing he may run as a third Party candidate if he did not win the
Most Trump supporters and GOP supporters alike are quick to point this out. I, unlike some of my colleagues at the time, was hesitant to judge
Trump from the outset and decided to give him a chance.
I was not only wrong about Donald Trump, but he actually managed to shift the Party further to the left than McCain, Romney, or Bob Dole ever
could. As Trump surrounds himself with Bob Dole's old campaign staff (All losers, what happened to winners?), my worst fears are coming
true. Since the primaries he has shifted left on guns, minimum wage, immigration, and trade. His trade policies nearly reflect Bernie Sanders'
and are to the left of Hillary Clinton. If that does not serve as a warning to Republicans, I don't know what does.
Not only is Trump silently surrounding himself with "Democrat lites" while publicly nominating a conservative to the ticket, he worked
with Reince Priebus, Paul Ryan, Paul Manafort and Steve Womack to shut out a legitimate grassroots effort to change party rules, that
if followed could have united the Party. The same happened in 2012 when the Party concocted rules to keep out the Ron Paul grassroots
movement. It is true that some were anti-Trump forces, but so what? Not all the rules they wanted changed had anything to do with Trump.
After a voice vote on a rules change was too close to call, a roll call vote was requested by grassroots organizers led by Mike Lee,
who proclaimed that they had the eleven state petitions necessary for the vote. But Steve Womack, who was handling the rules vote,
walked off stage only to return later declaring that three states mysteriously rescinded their petitions. The three states that
withdrew their petitions were never mentioned and are still unknown. Back door dealing between Trump and the establishment? I guess
we'll never know. The irony is that it has been Donald Trump decrying a "rigged" system, and at times it seems like he is the purveyor
of one. The GOP establishment had their chance to unite the grassroots and the establishment, but chose not to. It is to these
very actions and ideas that led to the "anti-establishment" fervor that swept Donald Trump to a primary victory.
Ted Cruz, a much abhorred figure by the establishment, has always been a de facto grassroots Tea Party figure in the conservative
movement. He's called out Mitch McConnell as "liar" on the Senate floor (Ex-Im bank amendment fiasco) and refused to play by
the rules of the "Old Boys Club" that discourages the change so many voters wanted when Ted Cruz was elected. During the primaries,
Donald Trump's campaign tweeted an embarrassing photo of his wife, accused his father of aiding in the JFK assassination, and
rumors from "Washington insiders" surfaced about his infidelity and alleged affairs with five mistresses without any corroborating
I suppose Donald Trump apologized and expected an endorsement from Cruz after impugning his father, and attacking the mother
of his children? Cruz's speech was one of liberty and freedom, capitalism and the Constitution, yet in subtle undertones,
not to overshadow the dim glow of Trump's policies that are in some ways antithetical to Cruz's message. He implored the
crowd not to "stay home" and told a crowd of staunch GOP and Trump supporters to "vote their conscience." Reading the latest
headlines you would think Ted Cruz was on stage burning Donald Trump in effigy.
During his speech at the convention, Cruz spoke for the grassroots movement that was shut out of the debate early on in
the RNC. While Trump offered a list of excellent Supreme Court candidates and appointed a fine Vice President to the
ticket, it is not enough. Cruz spoke for the movement that swept Republicans into the House in 2010, only for them
to surrender more of the Constitution to a lawless President. He spoke for the voters that swept Republicans into the
Senate in 2014 on promises they would remove Obamacare and limit spending, only to pass more omnibus spending bills
and pretend defunding Obamacare is an impossibility.
Trump's campaign has been more concerned about actively courting disaffected Bernie supporters rather than the conservative
base. The base of the Party wants to hear more conservative principles from the nominee himself, many libertarians
and GOP members on the fence could be won over by his espousing of constitutional liberties and free markets. As
we have seen in the past, GOP candidates cannot win without turning out the base. Perhaps Ted Cruz's speech acted
as a "shot across the bow," and either halts, slows down or shifts a party that is moving to the left in lock-step
with the Democrat Party, back towards the constitutional principles--disseminated by Ronald Reagan--that won two
massive landslide elections in 1980 and 1984.