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Will Ted Cruz leave the GOP fat, drunk and pregnant?

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Jay Bookman offer THIS SNARKY TAKE on the possibility that Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas will become the Republican presidential nominee in 2016:

For a quarter century now, the Republican Party has suppressed its own instincts, refusing to nominate candidates who dared to give full voice to the sentiments of its base, refusing to surrender to that temptation. The result has been a series of lackluster nominees — Bush, Dole, Bush, McCain, Romney — that time and again left the party faithful disappointed in themselves for compromising.

Ted Cruz, on the other hand, is their giant box of Godiva chocolates at a Weight Watchers convention, their open bottle of Jim Beam at an AA meeting.  He’s the bad boy tempting them to throw away all restraint, the one whispering in their ear all the things they want to hear and believe.

And if they succumb, he’s going to leave them fat, drunk and pregnant.

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Meanwhile, Michael Tomasky has THIS to say:

Now let’s be clear. Cruz would lose. Clinton would destroy him. Oh, maybe we’ll have an economic meltdown in September 2016, and unemployment on Election Day will be 9 percent; or maybe someone will learn that Bill has been doing something extracurricular that shocks even longtime Bill-watchers. But barring those two circumstances, she’ll crush him like a grape. Remember where you read it: If 2016 pits Clinton against Cruz, the Democrats will carry Georgia. Yes, Georgia (last carried by her husband in 1992, but not 1996). Under normal conditions, Cruz can’t possibly top 165 electoral votes against her. Even against Martin O’Malley, his various paths lead to 235, 240.

And this brings us to the interesting question my liberal pals and I have been discussing, more interesting than the question of Cruz’s chances of becoming president, which are near nil. From our point of view, would Cruz-as-nominee be a good or bad thing? The “good” case is much along the lines I laid out above, although it goes further: Yes, he’d be creamed; and then, after having lost three elections in a row, and the popular vote in seven out of the last eight, the Republicans would finally return to some measure of sanity. This is the Cruz-as-Robespierre theory: he’d take things so far that nearly everyone would say, “OK, we’ve gone a little far, and we’re sick of losing, so let’s tack toward the center and change a few positions” (path to citizenship, same-sex marriage, etc.).Thermidor would set in.

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