How divided is the Republican Party right now?To which Priebus gave the obvious, and meaningless, answer:
I don't think it's divided at all.Softball question, softball answer—ridiculous, but expected. But then Schieffer asked Priebus to explain how he could say that the GOP isn't divided when an issue like immigration reform clearly divides Republicans ... and Priebus responded by saying that Ted Cruz's support for immigration reform proves the GOP is united on the subject. Seriously:
I think that if you look at-- you google Ted Cruz, you google Rand Paul and immigration, you-- what you'll find is that even Rand Paul and Ted Cruz have been out there publicly calling for serious immigration reform.Oh, really? Both Cruz and Paul voted against comprehensive immigration reform when it came up on the Senate floor, but let's zero on on Cruz, because unlike what Priebus claimed, he's been the guy leading the charge against serious immigration reform. For example:
House Republicans who supported the "principles" of immigration reform floated by Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, late last month grumbled Tuesday that the plan was dead on arrival because Cruz blasted it as "amnesty," spurring a blizzard of negative phone calls to House Republicans.Or as Cruz told Glenn Beck's website in January of this year:
"After that it was 'We'll get back to you on immigration reform,' " said one Republican congressman who declined to be identified.
Why on earth would the House dive into immigration right now? It makes no sense, unless you’re Harry Reid.Or this, from late last year:
Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) has shaped the view of Republican leaders on immigration reform, and his sway with grassroots conservatives will make passing comprehensive legislation significantly more difficult.Bottom-line: If Reince Priebus thinks Ted Cruz is a shining example of how the GOP supports immigration reform, then the GOP is even worse off than we could have imagined. And to the extent that it's not divided, it's only because the entire party is unified in fear of being on the receiving end of Ted Cruz's scorn.
Cruz scored a victory in the battle for the hearts and minds of his party over the weekend when Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) backed away from the Senate’s overhaul of immigration laws.