Sunday, October 13, 2013

What Ted Cruz has accomplished... for Democrats

Extending the premise advanced in yesterday's post with regard to the fact that Ted Cruz is Greg Abbott's biggest mistake...

First, recall that it was Abbott who hired Cruz to serve as solicitor general for the state of Texas in 2003, where he worked for five years.  During that time Cruz argued several significant cases, including nine times before the SCOTUS.  From the Cruz Wiki page...

In the landmark case of District of Columbia v. Heller, Cruz drafted the amicus brief signed by attorneys general of 31 states, which said that the D.C. handgun ban should be struck down as infringing upon the Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms. Cruz also presented oral argument for the amici states in the companion case to Heller before the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.

In addition to his victory in Heller, Cruz has successfully defended the constitutionality of Ten Commandments monument on the Texas State Capitol grounds before the Fifth Circuit and the U.S. Supreme Court, winning 5-4 in Van Orden v. Perry.

Cruz authored a U.S. Supreme Court brief for all 50 states successfully defending the recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance in public schools, winning 9-0 in Elk Grove Unified School District v. Newdow.

Cruz served as lead counsel for the state and successfully defended the multiple litigation challenges to the 2003 Texas congressional redistricting plan in state and federal district courts and before the U.S. Supreme Court, winning 5-4 in League of United Latin American Citizens v. Perry.

Cruz also successfully defended, in Medellin v. Texas, the State of Texas against an attempt by the International Court of Justice to re-open the criminal convictions of 51 murderers on death row throughout the United States.

That is a cornucopia of "Hall of Shame" conservative litigation.   It's noteworthy that Abbott's won-loss record in lawsuits of all kinds has gone down significantly since Cruz left his employ.

But this post is about mistakes, and Cruz made plenty while he was SG.

In his ongoing gambit to claim Greg Abbott’s record as his own, Ted Cruz has opened up his record to intense scrutiny from Texas voters.

It has been revealed that Cruz as a bureaucratic lawyer severely mishandled a court case that would have expedited justice and punished child rapists with the ultimate penalty.

The Texas Legislature passed “Jessica’s Law,” which imposes the death penalty on certain child rapists. Several states joined Texas in calling for justice, and liberals sued, claiming the laws were unconstitutional.

Greg Abbott told Ted Cruz to defend the law before the Supreme Court, but Cruz completely failed to perform elementary research surrounding the death penalty, and Texas’ law was rejected.
"The oversight became the basis of an unsuccessful effort to get the Supreme Court to rehear the case. The request for rehearing noted that the oversight was a ‘significant error.’"
Cruz’s “significant error” caused the Texas law to be defeated, and tougher penalties for child rapists were dismissed.

Cruz doesn’t mention this embarrassing error when he gives speeches. He instead ignores his failures and claims credit for Greg Abbott’s leadership. In fact, he won’t even publicly admit that his appalling incompetence during the case had any significance.
"At the time, however, Cruz was concerned that a New York Times reporter might write that the office of the solicitor general ‘screwed up by not finding (the military provision)’…"
Official correspondence from a defeated Ted Cruz illustrated his attempt to hide his malfeasance.
"Would love to have some sort of response so we don’t look silly," Cruz wrote to a lawyer in the attorney general’s office.

There's a lot more at the link.  But let's just concern ourselves with the present day, as Abbott bids for governor and Cruz keeps the federal government shut down.  In a nutshell, over the past thirty days Ted Cruz has almost single-handedly resurrected the Democratic Party nationally. "Single-handedly" contains only a little bit of hype, since he couldn't have done it without help from John Boehner and these 32 schmucks in the House.  But the accomplishments are still remarkable:

-- A month ago, Democrats were divided and fighting over Obama as it looked as if the nation would go to war in Syria.  Now the party is united again. (!)

-- The Affordable Healthcare Act was polling badly; now it is trending up.  (!!)

-- Obamacare's glitch-filled start has been obscured by the GOP's machinations over the shutdown -- including Cruz's "filibuster" --  and many Americans are blaming that on the shutdown instead of the administration. (!!!)

-- A tight governor's race in Virginia now has the Democrat starting to pull away.  The Republican nominee, a Tea Party moron named Ken Cuccinelli, skillfully avoided having his picture taken with Cruz at a GOP dinner where they were both keynoting.  (!!!!)

-- Cruz's private practice client way back in 1998, Speaker Boehner, is on the verge of being ousted by the crazies in his caucus.  (!!!!!)

Give Abbott a little credit for recognizing the "Poop" Cruz disaster and trying to distance himself from it, but that won't endear him to the kooks who vote in the TXGOP primary.  As with his weak attempts to court Latinos, Abbott is rolling over thin ice.  There is little doubt that Texas Republicans are eventually going to rue the day that Ted Cruz burst on the scene.  And Greg Abbott owns that.

This past Friday I made a phone call to my Congressman, John Culberson, speaking to a staffer who answered the phone, and it went like this:

"First let me say that your job must be awfully tough right now and I sympathize with you, particularly as your boss is trying to take away your employer-provided health care.  That said, I want to thank Mr. Culberson for the excellent work he is doing for the Democratic Party.  A month ago there was no hope that Democrats could retake the House, but thanks to the work done by he and the other Tea Party caucus members, there are now 24 Congressional districts that have moved from 'likely Republican' to the toss-up category.  Please pass on my gratitude and tell him to keep up the good work."

Yes, you can use that when you call Ted Cruz's office next week.

Update: "Ted Cruz was a smelly, terrible roommate." LMAO

1 comment:

Elderlady said...

Great commentary Diddie. Thanks.

After reading about the folks who showed up at Reliant yesterday to learn more about the ACA. (And while watching Aggie football last night, and trying to put my mind to other things).

I'm not a "pol operative" in any sense of the word. But, I do suspect that a "winning" issue for Wendy Davis... would be that if/when she is elected Governor, Texas will indeed accept Federal money to expand Medicaid. JMHO.