Rubio’s Big Mistake: Attacking Cruz on Immigration

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) (photo credit: Gage Skidmore)
Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) (photo credit: Gage Skidmore)

A slew of new polling is suggesting Marco Rubio’s strategic attacks on Ted Cruz for being insufficiently anti-immigration are a big mistake: Cruz is now leading Donald Trump in Iowa (40 percent to 31 percent, with Rubio lagging at 12 percent), and pulling into a strong (or rather clear) second in South Carolina (38 percent for Trump, 23 percent for Cruz, 12 percent for Rubio), while New Hampshire remains Trump territory, with a within-the-margin-of-error, three-way tie for second place (Cruz at 14 percent, Rubio at 13 percent, Chris Christie at 11 percent).

Some political consultant, recognizing the race is now about who will emerge as the alternative to Trump, decided Rubio needed to whack on Cruz. Okay I guess, although voters dislike it. But then he absurdly decided to make a fundamentally false claim — that Cruz has flip-flopped on immigration — based on a technicality. Not only is the claim false, but the candidate about whom it is true is . . . Rubio.

This kind of falsified attack is what voters mean by “politics as usual.” This year they aren’t buying it.

This morning, Cruz supporters launched a new Super PAC ad aimed at highlighting the Senator’s trustworthiness and the promises he kept to voters and¬†to capitalize on his consistency and his bluntness.

Kellyanne Conway, the Super PAC’s president sent out the following statement to Cruz supporters:

Twenty-fifteen has been a rebuke of the insiders, the Establishment, the professional political class that keeps forcing on us candidates that either win and betray us or don’t win at all. This election season, voters are seeking out a candidate they can trust to move our country in the right direction, improve our standing in the world, and protect our lives and our freedoms. That man is Sen. Ted Cruz. He exemplifies what it means to make promises and to keep them. In the most recent debate, Ted specifically mentioned ¬†judgement, strength, clarity and trust in his closing statement as essential traits of the next president. Ted embodies all these traits, which is why he is resonating with the electorate and why his message of national security, border security and getting tough on ISIS is a unifying message to all voters.

You can watch the ad below:

Maggie Gallagher is a senior fellow at the American Principles Project.