WaPo Reporter: 'Interesting' Cruz Feels Accountable to Grassroots, Not GOP Leadership
A senior Washington Post congressional reporter found it "interesting" that Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) told him that he answers to his constituents and the grassroots instead of the leaders in the Republican leadership who make up the permanent political class.
On Tuesday, Paul Kane said that in an interview in August, Cruz told him that every day in the Senate he tries to remember "to whom I am accountable; and it is not elected officials in Washington." He also said, "with all respect," it is not the mainstream media either.
"The people to whom I believe I am accountable are the men and women in Texas... who knocked on doors, who made phone calls, who stood up and said 'Please, help turn this country around,'" Cruz, who is leading the defunding Obamacare efforts, told him.
Kane commented on Twitter that he found it "interesting" that Cruz "views people 'who knocked on doors, made phone calls' for him as who he answers to."
In Kane's story, he wrote that "many GOP senior aides and senators say Cruz has become an ideological warrior seeking to purify the party, resembling former Alaska governor Sarah Palin and former senator Jim DeMint (S.C.)."
In fact, Palin, in an exclusive op-ed for Breitbart News on Saturday, wrote that Republicans in the permanent political class were attacking Cruz because he was not the type of politician who promised to come to D.C. to change it only to be changed by it:
Those of us who hang in there supporting a major political party with our energy, time, and contributions would like to believe that that party would praise principled conservatives like Ted Cruz and Mike Lee for following through on campaign promises. We’d like to believe that the GOP establishment would applaud the way these bold leaders have rallied the grassroots to their cause. But, no, such praise would require a commensurate level of guts and leadership, and the permanent political class in D.C. is nothing if not gutless and rudderless.
Kane, a longtime observer of Washington's political scene, has found it surprising that Cruz was not just giving lip service, like many Republicans have done, during his insurgent 2012 Senate campaign in Texas, to the idea of going to Washington to defund and repeal Obamacare. For trying to live up to his campaign promises, "top" Republicans have savaged Cruz, even sending Fox News Sunday host Chris Wallace opposition research on one of their own in hopes that Wallace would "hammer" Cruz with it.