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Ted Cruz, Donald Trump and the Lost Cause of Party Unity

By Dustin Rowles | Politics | July 21, 2016 |

By Dustin Rowles | Politics | July 21, 2016 |

Where does one even start after a night like last night at the Republican National Convention? It wasn’t like there were any Easter-Egg gaffes that the media might be able to surface. There was nothing subtle about that trainwreck. It was in full view of the entire television-watching audience.

Let’s start with this: Laura Ingraham basically gave a Nazi salute to Donald Trump, who returned it.

Was it intentional? Maybe not, but it certainly played right into Hillary Clinton’s ad summing up Trump’s past racist comments:

It’s also worth noting that Laura Ingraham inspired one of the three best scenes in West Wing history, and the greatest fake President pwning of all-time.

“While you may be mistaking this for your monthly meeting of the ignorant tight-ass club, in this building, when the President stands, nobody sits.”

Speaking of stealing crab puffs, the big story of the night was Ted Cruz, who got President Barlett-like revenge on Donald Trump for suggesting his father killed JFK and for posting crap like this on Twitter:

How did Cruz get his vengeance? By giving the speech of his life — what many are calling a warm-up for his 2020 campaign — and by not only refusing to endorse Trump, but beckoning Republicans to “vote their conscience,” a callback to the delegates’ failed attempt to insert a consciousness clause into convention voting, allowing voters to select someone other than Trump.

He also ran long, pushing part of the VP speech out of primetime.

Here was the Trump family reaction to the non-endorsement.

Trump did temporarily steal Cruz’s own limelight by walking into the Hall during the climactic moments of his speech, pulling the camera’s focus off of Cruz, which was a total Goebbels move, by the way. I’m not kidding.

Speaking of Goebbels, who do you think this describes?

His primary rules were: never allow the public to cool off; never admit a fault or wrong; never concede that there may be some good in your enemy; never leave room for alternatives; never accept blame; concentrate on one enemy at a time and blame him for everything that goes wrong; people will believe a big lie sooner than a little one; and if you repeat it frequently enough people will sooner or later believe it.

That was the U.S. Army’s psychological profile of Adolf Hitler. Does it ring any bells?

Despite attempting to steal Cruz’s thunder, Cruz’s speech and the aftermath completely overshadowed the Pence speech, although Trump tried to spin it with a “big lie.”

No big deal? A guy just got up at your convention and basically told everyone not to vote for you, but to vote their conscience.

He got boos from the crowd (except for the cheering Texas delegation), and guess who led the boos?

Cruz is a terrible, revolting awful human being — and that should not be lost in any of this — but at least he has a backbone.

The scene afterwards was remarkable:

It was fuck-yous all around.

So much for party unity.

Oh really?

Screen Shot 2016-07-21 at 9.50.07 AM.jpg

At least there was this.

Dustin is the founder and co-owner of Pajiba. You may email him here, follow him on Twitter, or listen to his weekly TV podcast, Podjiba.