We have yet another example of why Ted Cruz, despite many worthy candidates in the current chamber, remains the most dunked-on person in the Senate.
The Texas Senator showed off a remarkable contempt for his supporter’s intelligence and for basic historical fact when he held a melodramatic press conference Thursday outside the Supreme Court to wail against the Democrats for…wait for it…trying to pack the court. Cruz actually had the temerity to claim what the Democrats were trying to do is something Republicans would never dare do…except they did. Here’s the exact quote.
And if you care to hear Cruz say it himself, here’s the clip.
It was just another publicity stunt where the senator once again uses taxpayer-funded time to stir up an imaginary fight for the sake of stoking more division and “owning the libs.” The bill Cruz and fellow Senators Lindsay Graham of South Carolina and Marsha Blackburn of Tennessee were complaining about today calls for expanding the Court from nine justices to 13, but it has little to no chance of going anywhere. It’s co-sponsored by just 12 Democratic members of the House. And House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has already said she won’t advance it.
Yet there were Cruz and Graham, pontificating about another imaginary attempt by the left to subvert democracy. Never mind that it was wildly inaccurate at best, and blatantly dishonest at worst.
For starters, the Supreme Court has had a conservative bent for years, well before Cruz entered the Senate. In other words, the GOP didn’t have to try and stack the court because it already had an advantage.
Also, as Steve Benen notes for MSNBC, when Antonin Scalia died in 2016, Cruz gladly took part in blocking President Obama’s nomination of Merrick Garland. That left the court with only 8 justices for nearly a year. That wasn’t court packing, but it certainly was court rigging. He even went as far as publicly saying, before the 2016 election when he and most everyone else thought Trump would lose, that he had no problem keeping Scalia’s seat on the bench vacant another four years.
Unlike Senator Cruz, we also remember how he and his fellow Republicans did not follow the precedent that Mitch McConnell set in 2016 with Garland by ramming through the nomination of Amy Coney Barrett to fill the seat vacated by Ruth Bader Ginsberg’s death last year. Remember, McConnell had said he blocked Garland’s nomination because it was an election year; The people, he said, have a right to weigh in on the choice.
Coney Barrett’s nomination happened after millions of early votes had already been cast in the 2020 election. So much for precedent! This led to many people calling Cruz out on social media.
Narrator: Except, in fact, they did https://t.co/TJzXchBInY— Tiffany Thiele (@thielefor55th) April 22, 2021
Cruz likely doesn’t care very much that so many people recognize his disingenuous behavior. Shame does not seem to be a characteristic he is burdened with. That could apply to many people in Congress, but for Ted Cruz, shameless behavior seems to be something he takes strange pride in.