Politically divisive tactics -- most politicians relish every opportunity to create lines of demarcation against opponents. Some very unscrupulous candidates do so repeatedly to draw attention, no matter how ridiculous their claims or how incredibly vile their accusations. Some say it's just "politics as usual," yet the GOP seems to be taking the strategy of partisan blame to new heights with presidential candidates like Donald Trump and Ted Cruz.
The latest chapter of mudslinging by Cruz targets the entire Democrat party. By the way, In 2012, Gallup reported an average of 47% of Americans identified themselves as Democrats or said they were independents who leaned Democratic (42% identified as or leaned Republican). Yet, Ted Cruz recently claimed Democrats must take the blame for American criminal violence.
On November 30 on the "Hugh Hewitt Show," Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas) said that most violent criminals also identify as Democrats. Cruz explained ...
“Here is the simple and undeniable fact – the overwhelming majority of violent criminals are Democrats. There is a reason why for years the Democrats have been viewed as soft on crime. They go in and appoint to the bench judges who release violent criminals."
Cruz continued ...
“They (Democrats) go in and fight to give the right to vote to convicted felons. Why? The Democrats know that convicted felons tend to vote Democrat. The media never reports on any of that. [It] doesn’t want to admit any of that.”
Cruz then argued that the mainstream media often tries linking violent crime with the GOP, even when such ties are nonexistent. He said ...
“Every time you have some sort of violent crime or mass killing you can almost see the media salivating, hoping, hoping desperately that the murderer happens to be a Republican so that they can use it to try and paint their political enemies. You can see that every time there’s a terrible crime they’re so excited – ‘come on, please be a Republican so we can try and paint the other side.' It is one of the more egregious examples of media bias and something we see over and over again."
(Mark Hensch. "Cruz: Most violent criminals are Democrats."
MSN News. November 30, 2015.)
America must question both Cruz's stand and his logical support. Dr. Eric Ostermeier, research associate at the Humphrey School’s Center for the Study of Politics and Governance, must certainly think so. In fact, the 2008 Uniform Crime Reports came to this conclusion:
"The average violent crime rate (murder, forcible rape, robbery, aggravated assault) in 2008 for the 28 states that voted for Barack Obama in the 2008 Presidential election was 389 incidents per 100,000 residents. The average violent crime rate for the 22 states that voted for John McCain was 412 incidents per 100,000 residents – or a 5.8 percent higher incidence of violent crime."
The red state/blue state crime data split also holds true across other measures of statewide partisan groupings.
"For example, a Smart Politics analysis of partisan control of state legislatures finds the 27 states with Democratic-controlled legislatures with an average violent crime rate of 390 incidents per 100,000 residents. The average violent crime rate for the 14 states with Republican-controlled legislatures was 11.1 percent higher, at 433 incidents per 100,000 residents. (The rate was lowest among eight states with split partisan control – at 382)."
(Dr. Eric Ostermeier. "Red States Have Higher Crime Rates Than Blue States."
One thing is for certain: 2008 Uniform Crime Reports is not an aberration. Ostermeier reports ...
"Looking back to the 2004 Presidential election, the 19 states that voted for Democrat John Kerry had an average violent crime rate in 2004 of 361 incidents per 100,000 residents. The 31 states that voted for George W. Bush had an average violent crime rate that year of 419 incidents per 100,000 residents – or a 16.3 percent higher rate. Bush states also had an 18.6 percent higher rate of property crimes in 2004 (3,648 incidents per 100,000 residents) than the Kerry states (3,077)."
This is not the first time Cruz has blamed Democrats for crime. Cruz (whose father hails from Cuba) has also stated that Senate Democrats have worked to protect immigrants with criminal records because they are “willing to stand in pure party line vote” in support of releasing undocumented immigrants who are “murderers and rapists” to protect the president.
“The Democrats are getting more and more open that they are the party of illegal immigration,” he said during an interview with Iowa radio host Simon Conway. “They support amnesty. They support releasing criminal illegal aliens.”
(Cristina Silva. "Ted Cruz Calls Latinos 'Violent Criminal Illegal Aliens,' Slams Democrats For Protecting Immigrants." International Business Times. October 13, 2015.)
In the wake of the recent Planned Parenthood tragedy in Colorado Springs, Cruz has taken yet another opportunity to extend his extreme divisiveness. One might conclude his motives for speaking out are not only rooted in uncompromising Republican ideals but also in overly rigid religious tenants.
Consider that on April 25, 2015, while speaking in Waukee, Iowa, Cruz argued that Democrats have become so extreme and "intolerant" of religious views that "there is no room for Christians in today's Democratic Party." Cruz said, "There is a liberal fascism that is dedicated to going after believing Christians who follow the biblical teaching on marriage."
(Ashley Killough. "Ted Cruz: Democratic Party home to 'liberal fascism' against Christians."
CNN. April 26, 2015.)
And, during a speech at the National Right to Life convention in 2013, Cruz said Democrats in the Senate don’t really care that abortionists like Kermit Gosnell kill babies in what is essentially infanticide.
(Steven Ertelt. "Ted Cruz Tells Pro-Life Convention: Democrats Don’t Care About Infanticide. lifenews.com. June 28, 2013.)
Rep. Peter King, a senior member of both the Homeland Security and Intelligence committees, called Senator Ted Cruz a "big mouth" who "basically led the Republican Party over the cliff." The New York Republican told CNN's Wolf Blitzer in an interview on "The Situation Room, "To me, he's a guy with a big mouth and no results." King continued ...
"We have very, very complex issues facing the country today, and he goes out of his way to oversimplify. Ted Cruz may be an intelligent person, but he doesn't carry out an intelligent debate. He oversimplifies, he exaggerates ... he doesn't provide leadership and he has no real experience."
Referring to a Cruz 2013 speech that lasted more than 20 hours on the Senate floor, as Cruz railed against Obamacare, King said, "Shutting down the federal government and reading Dr. Seuss on the Senate floor are the marks of a carnival barker not the leader of the free world."
The Cruz message can be summed up with little effort: "All Democrats are bad, anti-Christian, crime-enabling, baby-killing fascists. All Cruz-devoted Republicans are good, God-fearing, lawful, right-to-life patriots. Does he simplify issues and paint people with broad strokes of overgeneralization while vilifying his opponents with extremely divisive methods? I think so. I also think Senator Cruz seems like an ideal presidential candidate for those who favor gridlock and partisan politics. And, the Cruz choir can be heard raising a loud, unyielding "Amen!"