Iowa-The Carson/Cruz Effect

We will never know the impact on this episode but it really does not make the Republican Party and some of its candidates look like they are above politics as usual.  This election is about a new beginning and “we the people” taking back our country.  Whoever we pick we must be able to trust.  Personally, for me, Cruz is no longer someone I could trust.

We will never know the impact on this episode but it really does not make the Republican Party and some of its candidates look like they are above politics as usual.  This election is about a new beginning and “we the people” taking back our country.  Whoever we pick we must be able to trust.  Personally, for me, Cruz is no longer someone I could trust.

While Iowa is now in our rear view mirror, it is important to at least add a couple of footnotes to our Campaign 2016 notebook.  The Iowa caucuses this year for the Republican Presidential primary featured a record turnout.  Both Cruz and Trump broke Republican individual vote count records.  Many precincts ran out of voting supplies.  and, Cruz erroneously communicated to his 1,500 precinct captains and workers that Ben Carson was dropping out of the race and they should let caucus goers know so they can change their vote to Cruz.  A Cruz Iowa staffer sent an email to all of the precinct captains that read:

“Breaking News. The press is reporting that Dr. Ben Carson is taking time off from the campaign trail after Iowa and making a big announcement next week,” the email read. “Please inform any Carson caucus goers of this news and urge them to caucus for Ted Cruz.”

Steve King, a congressman from Iowa and Cruz national co-chairman Tweeted out:

“Carson looks like he is out. Iowans need to know before they vote. Most will go to Cruz, I hope. https://twitter.com/moody/status/694320149432651776 

These Communications went out BEFORE the Caucus Voting Began Giving the Precinct Captains Ample Time to lLbby Carson voters to Vote for Cruz.

Ted Cruz defended the statements, and apologized to Carson, by blaming CNN for falsely reporting that Carson was dropping out of the race and returning to Florida.  You can find the timeline of the CNN reporting at http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2016/02/04/cruz-carson-email-trump-iowa-cnn/. You can make up your own mind as to what CNN reported, or not.

But, the Real Issue is Why the Cruz Campaign DID NOT Call the Carson Campaign to Confirm the story

This wasn’t some minor story.  The story that the #3 or #4 was dropping out of the race prior to the caucus starting was a very big deal.  For a candidate for the president of the United States to run with this story without even picking up the phone to call Carson is at the very least intellectually and morally dishonest.  Sorry Cruz fans but you cannot ride in claiming to be a true Christian then engage in shady campaign practices, especially a guy like Ben Carson.  But then again, we are way to used to this type of tactic by our elected officials.

I really thought Cruz was better than this.

Theories on the Potential Impact of the Misinformation:

Impact on Carson:  Apologists like Rush Limbaugh point out that this misinformation would not have gained Carson sufficient votes to win the Iowa Caucus.  That is really not the point as the difference between 4th and 3rd from a campaign fund raising point of view is huge.  IF Carson would have picked up 10 votes per precinct, that would have given him an additional 15,000 votes.  Some of these votes may have been switched to Rubio and if they were, Carson would have been in 3rd place.  This would have given Carson a big advantage in the first quarter fund raising game.

Impact on Trump:  Assuming that the misinformation caused only 4 voters to go to Cruz from Carson who were both battling over the Evangelical vote.  That would equate to 4 X 1,500 or 6,000 votes.  This would have all but assured a Trump win in Iowa over Cruz. 

Two things are sure.

  1. The misinformation campaign by Cruz had some impact on the final voting. 

  2. Cruz should have confirmed that the story was true before running with it prior to the caucus starting.  If Cruz himself did not know about the misinformation campaign, which I doubt, he should have held someone accountable. 

We will never know the impact on this episode but it really does not make the Republican Party and some of its candidates look like they are above politics as usual.  This election is about a new beginning and “we the people” taking back our country.  Whoever we pick we must be able to trust.  Personally, for me, Cruz is no longer someone I could trust.

Hat Tip

 

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