Tuesday marks the six month anniversary of Republican Ted Cruz’s election to the United States Senate, but rather than the traditional honeymoon, the liberal media have gone on the attack against the Tea Party hero and emerging 2016 presidential candidate and his conservative beliefs. In their own liberal grassroots circles, leftists have even gone as far to openly hope for Cruz’s death, as the Daily Kos screeched: “Give this man enough rope and a tree, please.”
When former Bill Clinton political strategist James Carville, on Sunday, actually credited Cruz for being “talented and fearless,” it marked a rare moment when TV viewers heard something nice about the Senator.
From CNN’s Wolf Blitzer lecturing him on his responsible fiscal cliff stance: “You’ve got to deal with reality,” to the Washington Post’s Jonathan Capehart calling Cruz a “jerk,” to MSNBC’s Chris Matthews claiming hate groups “must love Ted Cruz,” the liberal media have assaulted the outspoken conservative over the last six months.
The following is a list of the Top 10 Most Obnoxious Anti-Ted Cruz quotes from the past six months:
10. Cruz is a Lying Jerk!
Host Joe Scarborough: “He’s lying about what Republican Senators were saying in those meetings. He’s exaggerating. But, you know, he’s not lying about Democrats, he’s lying about his own party. You know, a lot of people in Washington including myself, we know what went on inside those meetings and what Ted Cruz is saying is just not true.” ...
Jonathan Capehart, Washington Post: “If there’s bipartisan agreement on Capitol Hill, it’s that Senator Cruz is a bit of a jerk. Well, maybe not a bit of a jerk. He is a jerk. Democrats don’t like him. But Republicans really can’t stand him.”
— During a discussion of Cruz accusing Republicans of being “squishes” on gun bill, on April 30 edition of MSNBC’s Morning Joe.
9. Smug Wolf Blitzer Lectures Ted Cruz to “Deal With Reality”
“You’re in the minority in the United States Senate. You’ve got to deal with reality...You’ve got a divided government. You’ve got to make concessions, you’ve got to compromise. If you’re just going to come into Washington and say ‘do it my way or the highway,’ you’re not going to get anywhere.”
— CNN’s Wolf Blitzer lecturing Republican Senator Ted Cruz on the need to compromise during fiscal cliff negotiations, The Situation Room, January 3.
8. “Ignorant” Cruz Playing to the “Illiterates” on Guns
“This guy, what he is saying, the way he is framing his question, suggests complete, utter ignorance. I’m talking about Ted Cruz here and I have brought this up before. Complete and utter ignorance and anybody – conservative jurists will agree with me and they do, that when he goes on this line of attack about violating the Second Amendment, it suggests complete, utter ignorance of what the Second Amendment says and what Scalia, Thomas, and the conservative court said in 2008 about what the Second Amendment is and what it is not. So did Ted Cruz not go to law school? Has he ever been to law school?
I’m just wondering why would he use his seat on the Judiciary Committee if he went to Harvard to put forward a willfully ignorant statement about this bill violating the Second Amendment, because it does not. And Ted Cruz knows it does not. So who is he playing for? Is he playing for people who can’t read, for illiterates?”
— Host Joe Scarborough attacks Cruz for taking on Senator Dianne Feinstein on her gun control bill on the March 15 Morning Joe.
7. Matthews Attacks Cruz for Supporting Gun Rights
“And there’s your guy Ted Cruz, a well-educated guy, another one of these well-educated right wingers like Pat Robertson. It’s like they flush out their high educations when they get out of school for political purposes.”
— Host Chris Matthews attacking Republican Senator Ted Cruz for supporting gun rights on the January 7 Hardball.
6. Scarborough: Cruz Turned Hearing into a “Clown Show”
Joe Scarborough: “By the way, there’s a way to ask Chuck Hagel tough questions. We showed clips of Roger Wicker, who is very conservative but very respectful. And then you see – and I don’t even mention his name, the new senator from Texas who turned it into a clown show –
Mika Brzezinski: “Oh, God.”
Scarborough: “– during his questioning and other senators that just were playing for the cameras and were trying to get a headline.”
— During discussion about Chuck Hagel nomination hearings on MSNBC’s Morning Joe, February 1.
5. Pro-Gun Cruz Just Like the Segregationists
“Good evening. I’m Chris Matthews in Washington. Let me start tonight with this. It used to be that the only way to get elected in the old Dixiecrat south was to be the farthest out there in backing segregation. Anyone who showed moderation was seen as soft. Anyone who talked compromise on civil rights was suspected of being on the other side. Well, to win in today’s Republican Party, which began displacing the Dixiecrats a half century ago, you have to be the farthest out there backing guns. Show moderation, you get your NRA badge ripped off you. Agree to any rule on gun safety and you’re marked as a traitor for life.
Well, it’s not just the back benchers, today some of the top people in the Republican Party, the people to watch, Marco Rubio, Rand Paul, Ted Cruz are right out there front in opposing President Obama on gun safety. So what happened? Why is the GOP the party of guns over people?”
— Host Chris Matthews on the January 17 Hardball.
4. Nasty Chris: Extremist Hate Groups “Must Love Ted Cruz”
Host Chris Matthews: “Let me go to you Brian. The way I’m chalking this up, this right wing hysteria, if you will — maybe it’s logical on their point of view, the way they’re thinking about demographic change — but guns, immigration and gays. Is that your reading, that those are the stimuli to these people when they organize these hate groups?...Who do they root for? Who do they root for?”
Brian Levin, Center for Study of Hate & Extremism: “They don’t root for anybody now.”
Matthews: “They don’t root for Rand Paul? Pat Buchanan? I mean, who? They must like this new guy Ted Cruz. They must love Ted Cruz, c’mon!”
— Talking about white supremacists, militias and other extremist groups on MSNBC’s Hardball, March 6.
3. David Brooks: Cruz “Has a Face That Looks a Little Like Joe McCarthy”
“So Ted Cruz is, just violates my sense. And I think if you mention the name Ted Cruz to other Senators, you just get titanic oceans of eye-rolling, because you’re a freshman, you don’t go in and take over hearings. Like hang around and learn how it’s done. And it’s like the most un-conservative act to come in two weeks into the job and decide the Senate exists for you to take it over. And so I think he’s made a lot of enemies. It doesn’t help that he has a face that looks a little like Joe McCarthy actually. So, I just, you know, I find him a little off-putting.”
— New York Times columnist David Brooks in a 92Y Campaign for the American Conversation discussion hosted by former CBS News reporter Jeff Greenfield at the 92nd Street Y, April 21.
2. Crushing Cruz: “Echoes of Joe McCarthy”
“You know, I don’t often say it, and I rarely say it, but there was echoes of Joe McCarthy there. Really strong echoes....The jackals are in the street tonight.”
— Host Chris Matthews on Hardball, February 14, talking about Senator Ted Cruz’s factual observation that Iran’s foreign ministry had responded positively to Chuck Hagel’s nomination to be Defense Secretary.
1. Scolding Cruz: A “Potentially Dangerous Demagogue”
NPR’s Nina Totenberg: “I actually know Cruz because he, for many years he argued cases for Texas in the United States Supreme Court. He is very smart. He is very glib, and he made sure that the attention was focused on him. This was not a distraction. This was Ted Cruz doing this [going after Chuck Hagel].”
Politico’s Evan Thomas: “You need to watch this guy, because there are a lot of demagogues out there, but not that many who are that smart. He is really, really smart, and that makes him potentially dangerous.”
— Exchange on Inside Washington, February 22.
David Letterman Anoints Cruz to “Stooge of the Night” Status
Announcer: “Tonight’s ‘Stooge of the Night’ is Republican Senator Ted Cruz of Texas.”
David Letterman: “Senator Cruz voted no on gun control reform. He recently received $14,000 in contribution from the Gun Owners of America and the National Association for Gun Rights. Senator Ted Cruz, there he is. ‘Stooge of the Night.’ How about a background check on his barber? That’s, that’s all I could come up there Paul, I’m sorry.
Paul Shaffer: “No, no we enjoyed it.”
— Host David Letterman includes Cruz to his “Stooge of the Night” segment on April 24 CBS Late Show.
-- Geoffrey Dickens is the Deputy Research Director at the Media Research Center. Click here to follow Geoffrey Dickens on Twitter.