Ted Cruz refuses to endorse Trump, tells voters to “vote your conscience”

Lone man refuses to give Hitler salute
One single, solitary man refuses to salute Hitler at a Nazi party rally

I have to say something about Ted Cruz’s speech at the Republican national convention in Cleveland, OH.

This article from The Federalist was the best summary:

Ted Cruz knows exactly what he’s doing. On Wednesday night at the Republican National Convention, Cruz walked onto the stage in Cleveland to thunderous applause, smiled, waved, and then openly defied the Republican Party.

Not only did Cruz fail to endorse Donald Trump, in a master stroke of rhetorical understatement he also implored Republicans to “vote your conscience” in November. It was all he needed to say.

Cruz uttered the name of the GOP nominee only once, right at the beginning. “I congratulate Donald Trump on winning the nomination last night,” Cruz told the crowd.

That was it. The very next thing he said was a rhetorical shot across Trump’s bow: “I want to see the principles of our party prevail in November.”

For the rest of his remarks, Cruz’s theme was freedom—not Trump or party unity or even Hillary Clinton. He took up his theme by talking about something he’s been talking about for years: the frustrations of average Americans with what Cruz calls the “Washington cartel.” Recall that early in the primaries, Cruz made common cause with Trump as an outsider candidate, lambasting not just the Obama administration but also a Republican establishment he said was woefully out of step with ordinary Americans.

“Voters are overwhelmingly rejecting big government,” he said. “That’s a profound victory. People are fed up with politicians who don’t listen to them, fed up with a corrupt system that benefits the elites, instead of working men and women.”

He lambasted a “political establishment that cynically breaks its promises and ignores the will or the people,” a shot aimed not just at the Obama administration, but at his GOP establishment rivals in Congress.

But it was clear, to those who have ears to hear, that Cruz was not making a case for Trump. “We’re fighting not for a particular candidate or campaign,” he said. Americans deserves leaders who “stand for principles” and “shared values.”

The closest Cruz came to an endorsement of anyone was a plea for the beleaguered down-ballot Republicans who in many places across the country face tough odds in November with Trump at the top of the GOP ticket.

“To those listening, please, don’t stay home in November,” he said. “Stand, and speak, and vote your conscience, vote for candidates up and down the ticket who you trust to defend our freedom and to be faithful to the Constitution.”

That’s what I’ve been telling people as well. Don’t vote for Trump, but do vote for solid conservatives at every level of government in your home state.

Here is the full speech: (Transcript at Caffeinated Thoughts)


Ted explained his actions like this:

Not everyone who runs for office is a "politician"
Not everyone who runs for office is a “politician”

Donald Trump repeatedly insulted the much better conservatives who were running against him in the primary. Most of those conservatives, like Rubio, have apologized, grovelled, and kissed his ring after they lost. Not Ted Cruz. Ted Cruz is as far above Trump in intelligence and morality as Hyperion to a satyr, to quote Shakespeare. There is no way that Cruz could kowtow to an immoral imbecile like Trump.

Jonah Goldberg says this at National Review:

Well here comes Ted Cruz providing exactly the sort of drama they yearned for and many of these same voices are aghast at Ted Cruz’s effrontery. The word has gone out across the land: This is an outrage! Not since Caligula appointed his horse to the Roman senate has a political figure showed such contempt for decorum and the solemnity of politics!

[…]I understand that Chris Christie will spew whatever fake outrage his masters instruct, like a trained seal barking for another herring. But I don’t see why so many supposedly seasoned political observers are volunteering for service.

[…]This is part of the corruption of Trump. He called Ted Cruz a liar every day and in every way for months (it used to be considered a breach in decorum to straight up call an opponent a liar, never mind use it as a nickname). The insults against his wife, the cavalier birtherism, the disgusting JFK assassination theories about his Dad: These things are known. And yet the big conversation of the day is Ted Cruz’s un-sportsmanlike behavior? For real?

[…]Ted Cruz has never been my favorite politician. And I am not so naïve that I don’t recognize the gamble Cruz is making.

But if the choice is between forgiving Ted Cruz’s obvious political calculation to become the standard bearer of an authentic conservatism or Donald Trump’s lizard-brain narcissism where no principle or cause outranks his own glandular desire to be worshipped, like a conqueror atop the carcass of conservatism, I choose Ted.

If the choice is between, say, congratulating the Boy Scoutish obedience of Mike Pence as he sells off bits and pieces of his soul like jewels from a family heirloom just to survive another day, or Ted Cruz who took the tougher road and refused to join the mewling mobs of toadies, apologists, human weather vanes, difference-splitters and vacillators, I choose Ted.

If the choice is between suspending the rules of decorum, decency, and civility for Donald Trump as he casually bad mouths his own country to the New York Times just as he secures the presidential nomination of the Republican Party or accepting that we are in dark and uncharted waters and conscience must light the way, I choose Ted.

I wasn’t worried about what Cruz would say at the convention. More than anyone else speaking, I trusted him not to stain his honor by endorsing someone he didn’t support, for political gain. There was just no way that someone with the education, achievements, moral character and conservative principles of Ted Cruz would lower himself into the gutter to support a disgusting piece of godless left-wing filth like Donald Trump. Ted Cruz will be back in 2020. Maybe then American voters will care enough to actually look into the backgrounds and achievements of the candidates.

I can only hope that God will give this nation one more chance to turn off of the road to serfdom. But even if he does not, we can’t say that we were not warned.

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24 thoughts on “Ted Cruz refuses to endorse Trump, tells voters to “vote your conscience””

  1. “To those listening, please, don’t stay home in November,” he said. “Stand, and speak, and vote your conscience, vote for candidates up and down the ticket who you trust to defend our freedom and to be faithful to the Constitution.”

    Definitely agree with that. With bold, Constitutionally minded people elected to office at the lower and state levels, we might be able to survive a Hillary or Trump presidency.


  2. I’m not sure that Cruz did not come across looking like a bitter loser last night, WK.

    And he refused to endorse the guy that the GOP establishment despises – I’m not sure that will play out well. I think some people will now lump Cruz in with the establishment. The enemy of my enemy and all.

    Then again, we Christians stand for God alone, so it does not really matter.


    1. The GOP establishment has fallen in line with Trump, and Trump does not have a conservative bone in his body. In fact, he’s just a stupid, ignorant narcissist. This is appealing to people of low intelligence. Politics is not WWF wrestling, though. This is not sports. There are actual principles involved. Trump’s entire record is a Democrat reocrd. There is nothing conservative in his past, it’s all donating to Democrats and taking Democrat positions, as I documented at the bottom of my post. Talk is not the same as having a record of battling.


  3. As much as I dislike either candidate, I will vote with my conscience. Presidents are elected for 4-year terms, Supreme Court justices are appointed for life.


  4. If I recall correctly, Ronald Reagan was also an outsider the establishment hated and labeled a radical “cowboy” who would bring about WWIII. The circular firing squad which is represented by Ted Cruz and others failing to honor their oaths to support the nominee (mad when they thought Trump couldn’t possibly win) will do nothing to benefit the country or the party and could well lead to a second Clinton in the White House.
    On a personal level I was never impressed by Trump (and quite frankly was rooting for Cruz) but Trump pulled off the win. He might be a good president and he might be a disaster but he would be hard pressed to be worse than the last 3 or 4 presidents. Both Bushes, Clinton, and Obama were terrible.
    The “establishment” doesn’t want Trump because he will upset their comfortable little world, a world inhabited by professional politicians who spend millions a year manipulating public opinion for their own benefit. Trump earned his place by talking them all down a few notches and deserves a chance to prove his mettle. I have a hard time believing he would be worse than Clinton or any other establishment candidate.


  5. There is nothing that you say with which I disagree, yet I will likely cast my vote for Trump, if only to cancel out someone’s vote for Hillary. I cannot let her win. I think the conservatives, what few there are, in lower levels of government stand a better chance of defending conservative principles in legislation and overall policy with Trump in the Big Chair that Clinton. It is likely only by degrees, but I’m betting our chances are better for surviving the next presidential term with him than with her. God knows why I’d be voting for Trump. I’ll sleep OK. I won’t if I don’t vote or vote for someone with no chance whatsoever to beat Hillary.


  6. None of the above matters in the least. One-third of the GOP went insane during the primaries and voted to nominate a sure loser who had never even been elected dogcatcher. As soon as Ted Cruz dropped out, I knew we were finished.
    It is because that one-third forgot William F. Buckley’s great maxim:

    “Nominate the most conservative candidate WHO CAN WIN.”

    Donald J. Trump is neither.

    Therefore we lose in November.

    You heard it here first.


  7. I can only hope that God will give this nation one more chance to turn off of the road to serfdom.

    Trump *is* that chance. I am in prayer for his victory every day.


  8. Obama has allowed Egypt & Turkey to drift into Russian orbit, Trump looks likely to do the same with Europe and SE Asia. WW3 is a real possibility with Trump’s amateurish level of understanding of geopolitics.


      1. Wtf, you don’t like Putin? Are you autistic? Serious question. I like your writing on other issues (science stuff especially) but you’re completely out to lunch to-day.


          1. True, and yet, Putin is STILL a far more honest leader and has more integrity than our current president, who has caused many to die with his rhetoric and stands proudly on the bodies of 3000 innocents each and every day.


  9. I don’t think the reaction to Cruz’s speech is about Mr. Trump or Senator Cruz. Ted Cruz, I believe, didn’t make that speech in a gamble to take the reins in 2020. He was simply speaking his mind and doing what he believes. Surely anyone who’s ever followed him would have known that long before he was invited to speak.

    But the importance of the affair begins after the speech. That’s when I imagine that even Cruz was surprised how intolerant and narrow the Republican party umbrella was that night. I’m genuinely disappointed the RNC had such little respect for a true, reliable, freedom-loving American that has defended freedom so well in the U.S. Senate. It would have been a testament to tolerance and diversity if he was cheered to a standing ovation for his eloquence about freedom. He advocated love, but received none. The whole affair feels a bit fascist to me. I respect him and glad he’s in the Republican Party. It seems many in that party think he should only say what they want him to–respect only when there’s agreement. Sounds a lot like our university culture.

    Too many Republicans are willing to exchanging truth for power and in the end get neither. Ted Cruz isn’t one of them. I hope he never will be.


    1. Yes, but it’s a non-endorsement endorsement. Pu out on a Friday, not tweeted fro his personal account. Nothing about Trump, all just anti-Hillary. I know a lot of people in the same boat with nothing positive to say about Trump based on his record, but voting AGAINST HILLARY based on hers.


      1. If one feels the need to vote against rather than for, I guess that’s all that matters, in the final analysis.

        For those who vote for rather than against someone, there are other, protest candidates, like the Libertarians.


        1. Gary Johnson is strongly pro-abortion. Only 1/3 of Libertarians are pro-life, meaning that 2/3 of Libertarians violate, in the most barbaric manner, the core motto or doctrine of Libertarianism. (Approximately: “Your right to swing your arms ends at my face.”)


      2. Trump has surrounded himself with very strong pro-life people, many solid conservative Christians, and the two lists of potential SCOTUS nominees appear to be solid originalists, mostly pro-life. I guess there is a decent chance he will throw pro-life Christians (redundant) under the bus. There is a 100% chance that Hillary will put insane liberals on SCOTUS.

        I will, as a Christian, attempt to stand in the gap of Hillary destroying the country WITH CERTAINTY by voting for Trump, who MAY do the same.

        I voted for Romney – Trump at least has a chance of becoming a Christian.


    2. Regardless of what Cruz does or doesn’t do or how he votes, Trump is still unacceptable to me both morally and politically.


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