“OK, who wants to say grace?”, Ted Cruz asks his wife and two daughters in a planned campaign ad.
“Me, I do,” Cruz’s youngest daughter, Catherine, says.
During the second take his other daughter, Caroline, volunteers.
In the ad’s outtakes, which Ted Cruz released for public viewing, his daughters make faces and appear restless after many takes.
And then he is sitting on the couch with the kids for the ”I’m Ted Cruz and I approve this message” ending, which involves a couple of takes as his daughters chime in with, “and we approve this image”, sometimes in sync, sometimes not, complete with giggles.
Cuteness is on heavy display.
How cute his children are. How proud he is of their cuteness.
In his first ad of the 2016 campaign titled “Blessing”, he includes pictures of himself, his wife, and kids walking as mom and dad swing the children between each other, and then sitting at a table saying grace.
His web site features family photos, many, of course, of his kids.
In his pre-Christmas ad he has his children sitting on the couch with him while he reads such Dr Seus-esque stories as “How Obamacare Stole Christmas,” and “Rudolph, The Underemployed Reindeer”, and during the reading of “How the Grinch Stole Her Emails”, one of his little moppets smarmily reads, “I will use my own server, and whose to know?”
So it would appear rather odd then that when Pulitzer Prize winning Washington Post cartoonist, Ann Telnaes , drew a cartoon with the message that Cruz is using his children as campaign props, Ted got all righteously indignant because children of candidates should be off limits.
The cartoon actually was not about the children, but, rather, Cruz’s using them, but Ted turned it around and assigned his children the role of victims.
Rather than accept that the cartoon criticizes him, he wants people to believe it attacks his children.
Cruz blasted the media and called for the children of presidential candidates to remain off-limits in campaign coverage.
Now, remember, no one is seeking them out or tracking them down, but Cruz keeps putting them in campaign ads, as if we are somehow electing them as part of a package.
In the past, if candidates did not want their kids dealt with by the press, they did not push them in the public’s eyes.
“If folks want to attack me, knock yourself out. I signed up for that, that’s fine. But my girls didn’t sign up for that. It used to be, for a long time, the rules across the board: the kids are off limits. That should be the rules. Don’t mess with our kids.”
So Ted, keep them out of your ads, and stop using their cuteness to your advantage.
And if the ad bothers you, you should not have posted it on your campaign page to complain about it, and then use your outrage to seek $1 million in contributions in 24 hours in order to “send a message to the Washington Post.”
As the cartoonist explained, “Ted Cruz has put his children in a political ad- don’t start screaming when editorial cartoonists draw them as well.”
In contrast, when Charlie Hebdo was attacked in France, and American news outlets chose not to publish pictures of the prophet in their coverage of the shooting, ignoring the sensitivity of such depictions to many Muslims, Cruz opined, “The First Amendment is designed to ensure a robust debate and refusing to publish the cartoons that are the alleged reason for this brutal act of murder and terror is inconsistent with the spirit of free debate.”
Using his own children for personal political gain, to raise money, and to attack opponents is, apparently, not a topic for debate.
In contrast to his statement at the time, “It is unfortunate to see media outlets engaging in censorship”, he demands it when it suits him.