You would be forgiven, dear readers, for thinking that Ted Cruz might have woken up on January 7th, or anytime thereafter, and realized the dangerous err of his ways. In the wake of one of the most appalling moments in our political history, surely the sight of an American flag would awaken any lingering trace of integrity long left dormant in his psyche.
You’re forgiven for this faulty assumption, because to think better of Ted Cruz or any seditious politician is to default to our better nature, our hardwiring to believe that people are essentially good and can always strive to be better.
Ted Cruz is not one of those people. And for several days he’s done his best to prove it by trying to catch that smoke on Twitter in a debate with the hilarious but very angry Seth Rogen.
If you came of age in the same general era that I did, the works of Seth Rogen probably hold a special place in your heart. While the multi-talented Rogen has been making us laugh with an impressive catalog of hit films and television shows, he has also been a reliable voice for the causes he cares about, most notably his years long funding Alzheimer’s research.
It started, as these things often do, with an epically dumbass tweet from Cruz on inauguration day after President Biden rejoined the Paris Climate Agreement.
Rogen, understanding the power of just the right words at the right time and still angry over Cruz’s role in a violent insurrection, was quick to retort. What happened next shouldn’t be overlooked: Cruz moved the beef from his official Senate account to his campaign account, a vehicle he has frequently used to hawk books and raise money from his…fans?
This is where Rogen really starts to shine, taking his fellow Canadian American to task, and pointing out to the famously anti-labor Cruz that Rogen happens to be a dues paying member of not one, but four unions.
Here at Signal, we think that this exchange matters a great deal. Cruz has, for his entire career, been on the opposite side of organized labor in this country at every turn, and his wanton desire to thumb his nose at Rogen is just another expression of Cruz’s elitism. Cruz even kept the shtick going long enough to insult folks suffering from Tourette’s, an illness that has touched Rogen’s own family.
Cruz’s efforts to decry cancel culture were similarly unsuccessful, as Rogen tied the debate up in a neat bow.
While it may have once been impossible to imagine a United States Senator catching verbal hands from the comedic mind that brought us the animated classic Sausage Party, that’s where we’ve found ourselves, and despite his vocation, Rogen doesn’t find it funny in the slightest that an insurrectionist like Cruz remains blithely confident that he’ll escape any consequence from his role in a bloody attempt to overthrow the government he’s been part of since 2013, and neither do every day Texans.
This is just the latest iteration of Cruz’s belief that political theater trumps actively working to improve the lives of your constituents. In the weeks since his words helped incite seditionists who would beat police officers to death in a failed coup attempt, Cruz has been unrepentant, thinking not of the damage he’s doing to our country but of his own prospects in a future Republican presidential primary.
With all possible respect to Seth Rogen (big fan, Seth) it should not take the angry voice of an actor and filmmaker to draw a spotlight to the inherent wrongness of Ted Cruz remaining in the Senate a moment longer. Throughout our history, we have miraculously somehow been governed by people who knew there were lines that could not be crossed, and that there was ultimately nothing more important than preserving our democracy and keeping the American experiment alive a little bit longer.
What Ted Cruz did on January 6th, and the in the weeks and months leading up to, isn’t just a betrayal of the trust his voters bestowed upon him. It is an absolute affront to the ideals we hold most sacred, and it is an affront carried out by Cruz for nothing other than his own personal gain.
How much longer will Cruz be allowed to continue this deranged debasement of the very foundation of our political system? Time will tell. But until then, we continue to wish godspeed to Seth Rogen, and welcome him to the most righteous cause of riding our state and the U.S. Senate of Ted Cruz.
Joe brings over a decade of experience as a political operative and creative strategist to Texas Signal, where he serves as our Senior Advisor and does everything from writing a regular column, Musings, to mentoring our staff and freelancers. Joe was campaign manager for Lina Hidalgo's historic 2018 victory for Harris County Judge and is a passionate sneakerhead.