Kennedy, Cruz, and Reagan Tourettes
GOP Senator can't even praise JFK without slavering over the Gipper
By Richard Whittaker, 11:27AM, Tue. Nov. 26, 2013
Modern institutional and Tea Party Republicans have an affliction. They can't go more than five words without shrieking "Reagan!" for no apparent reason. It's rather tragic, really, that they can't help but hark on the godfather of Irangate, Contragate et al. Take: Sen. Ted Cruz: He can't even get through a JFK tribute without that reflex.
Last Friday, Cruz penned a piece on Kennedy for the National Review Online on the death and legacy of the 35th president, John Fitzgerald Kennedy.
It began innocuously enough, with the words, "There is good reason why so many Americans remember our 35th president, John F. Kennedy, so fondly." But it quickly became more awkward than the time Cruz got all goo-goo eyed over Jesse Helms.
Of course, right wing revisionism slunk in, as the Senate voice of the Tea Party tried to paint JFK as a supply-side tax cutter (a notion thoroughly debunked for years.) However, when it came to foreign policy, Cruz really just couldn't help himself. He said:
He took a momentous stand for freedom on the world stage, traveling to Germany to visit the newly constructed Berlin Wall. There, he declared solidarity with the German people saying, "Ich bin ein Berliner" – "I am a Berliner."
That wall did not come down until another American president went to Berlin and, echoing JFK’s clarity and purpose, challenged the Soviets to "tear down this wall."
Yup, even midway through a tribute to an assassinated president, Cruz had to slip in a tribute to an asinine president, Ronald Reagan. He went on to say that "winning the Cold War may have been Ronald Reagan’s crowning achievement, but John Kennedy laid the foundation for the victory."
Well, that was nice of him to give that little concession. However, it'll be interesting to see how Cruz's depiction of Kennedy as a fearless Commie fighter will go down with the Red-fearing wing of his own party. Just saying "Bay of Pigs" is enough to get the rabid right whimpering about DC as slaves to the Commintern. And considering his own father's stances (anti-Castro, anti-Socialist, anti-evolution) this could be an awkward Thanksgiving at the Cruz homestead.