Wednesday, March 25, 2015
Coming to a Pizza Ranch near you!
To no one's surprise, it has now officially begun. This year, the annual Presidential sweepstakes promises yet another tourist season in a corner of the state and a square inch of the world that few visit otherwise except the loving parents of college kids.
Orange City has a brand new Embassy Suites--great breakfasts; and Sioux Center's Holiday Inn stands just outside of town like a citadel. Both beckon the politicians, their staffing teams, and their own swarm of journalists.
They'll be here. Count on it. No delusions of grandeur here--this ought to be a banner year in Siouxland, the entire region a revolving door, every last one of the candidates begging our favor.
This is, after all, a Republican year. The Democrats seem convicted that Hillary's their woman, despite "Clinton fatigue." She's head-over-heels above all comers, whether they arise from her party or anyone else's. She is the front-runner, period.
No matter. This year the live action is on the other side of the aisle, and it started this week when the inimitable Ted Cruz stood before 10,000 students in a required chapel and unloosed a score of "imagines"-- as in, imagine an America without taxes.
Cruz has been to Washington no longer than Barack Obama had, which seems to be enough these days. His greatest political accomplishment was am ill-fated, one-man show filibuster. But he's banking on the party's glassy-eyed true believers, people who will--let there be no doubt--vote.
And he wants us. Ted Cruz would not run for President if he didn't believe that Christian conservatism wouldn't kick-start his prominence and bring him a win in the Iowa caucuses. After all, most Iowa Republicans are professing members of the the First Church of Christian conservatives, Bishop Vander Plaats their prelate. Cruz may have started at Liberty University, but he's got Dordt and Northwestern scribbled down in his playbook because he thinks we're his people. He thinks we hate taxes and Obamacare and those drug-toting illegal immigrants as much as he and Steve King. He believes we too imagine the U.S. of A. under the direction of Jesus Christ. He knows we want an end to abortions, want baby-killing doctors and their patients, the mothers-to-be, all locked up in the county jail.
He knows we want what he wants, and he knows no one wants it more in Iowa than this corner of the state; and he knows that if he can win Sioux County, he might just win Iowa; and if he wins in Iowa, who knows where the game goes? That's why he has his eye on us.
If the first primary was in California, he'd be toast; but because it's in Iowa he's got a shot, if he can get all of the northwest corner. He's preaching to the choir. That's what he thinks.
I'm betting he's wrong. Even though what Ted Cruz said in that Liberty chapel resounds with thousands of Christian conservatives in northwest Iowa, Ted Cruz doesn't.
Why not? That's a good question. I really don't know, but I'll take a shot at an explanation. Ted Cruz is as much an Iowan as Debbie Wasserman-Schultz. Even though he speaks the language, even though every political chord he hits creates harmony, he doesn't sit down at the keyboard right. He's arrogant. He's a grand-stander, a know-it-all, just the kind of smart ass small-town folks smell out more quickly than black-and-white road kill.
Thank goodness, I say.
Anyway, out here on the edge of the plains it's primary season, and sooner or later Ted Cruz will show up. He thinks our corner is in his corner. Worse yet, he thinks our corner is his.
I'd like to believe he's wrong. I hope so.
Correction: Yesterday, Ted Cruz told CNN that he's going on Obamacare. The editors of this blog left the line in the post (see above) because most pundits believe Cruz is still against it, just on it.
Posted by J. C. Schaap at 6:29 AM