Howard Kurtz illustrates how both Senators want the spotlight and aren't afraid to sacrifice the Republican Brand to do it.

November 4, 2014

A Texas Republican wants the GOP to "stop giving in to the establishment" while the Junior Senator from Kentucky claims the party's brand "sucks" as badly as Dominoes Pizza crust. What both Ted Cruz and Rand Paul share is the need to make controversial statements that shine the light on them rather than their political party. Howard Kurtz labels this a "collision course" with the GOP, but in rather different fashions.

Rand Paul takes shots at other contenders, as is common in a Presidential election, but not in a midterm that is favorable to Republicans. Regarding Chris Christie's style, Rand said,

“This bully demeanor may go over well in certain places. But I grew up in the South. We’re yes ma’am and no sir, a little bit more polite."

Rand Paul also takes issue with how African-Americans have little to do with the GOP. He visited Ferguson, Missouri to make himself known in an area stricken with tumultuous police-community relations.

Try as he might to seem tolerant, Paul has had some unsavory characters in his own circle. Some of his staffers have brought unwanted attention with their affiliations with white supremacist groups. One is the co-author of his 2010 book, Jack Hunter. Paul said that Hunter had never acted in a discriminatory way, and that his earlier work in South Carolina was a form of youthful political showmanship. We'll never forget when Rand Paul was nailed by Rachel Maddow for being soft on racial discrimination. Seems like Paul's objection to military imperialism will hamper his efforts to be the 2016 nominee.

Ted Cruz is an entirely different form of wingnuttery. He is the quintessential Seven Mountains Dominionist candidate, who takes the GOP as far to the right it has ever been. Both Cruz and Paul were anointed in a ceremony in Iowa, along with Reince Priebus which means the religious fundamentalists seem pretty happy with any of these men. But Ted Cruz has recently gone full Christian martyr by launching robocalls in Houston over the issue of defending pastors who speak out against tolerance of homosexuals. Ted Cruz wants the U.S. to be a Christian nation.

He feels candidates like Willard Romney, John McCain and Bob Dole are too mushy and centrist. He wants a full frontal assault on the Obama Administration if the GOP prevails in today's election.

If the Republicans win the Senate, Cruz told the Washington Post, he wants a series of hearings on Obama “looking at the abuse of power, the executive abuse, the regulatory abuse, the lawlessness that sadly has pervaded this administration.” That will likely happen, although the House has held many such hearings.

It seems most likely that the GOP will bend to the will of Ted Cruz as it has when he led the government shutdown in 2013, costing taxpayers billions. Cruz will be strengthened by the victories of far right fundamentalists like Ben Sasse and Joni Ernst, who will follow in his über right-wing footsteps. Howard Kurtz accurately presented these two as they are, narcissists who want different paths for their party. What Kurtz forgot to mention is how frightening the prospect is that anti-government sociopaths could somehow gain control of the most powerful office on earth. It can't be stressed enough that these men are not interested in 99.9% of America. Then again which Republicans are for the majority? There aren't any that come to mind.

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