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Tags: ted cruz | wins | values | voter | summit | poll

Cruz Overshadows Jindal as Ryan Crashes the Party Event in Iowa

Sunday, 28 September 2014 07:43 AM

It wasn’t much of a contest between the college debate champ and cerebral student of health care systems, even after a top Republican policy guru, Paul Ryan, crashed the party.

Ted Cruz and Bobby Jindal, potential 2016 Republican presidential candidates, were the headliners tonight at a gathering of party conservatives in Iowa. Cruz dominated, captivating the crowd and showcasing why the freshman senator from Texas can’t be counted out in the fast-approaching 2016 nomination season.

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Cruz won the Value Voters Summit presidential straw poll on Saturday.

The crowd burst onto applause on Saturday, as Family Research Council President Tony Perkins announced that Cruz won 25 percent of votes at the annual Washington conference.

The event offered an early glimpse of the competition for Christian conservatives, a potent bloc among voters in the lead-off Iowa caucuses. In 2012, 57 percent of Republicans who participated in Iowa described themselves in entrance polls as born again or evangelical Christians.

Ivy League-educated and known for his feisty oratory, Cruz made only one subtle nod to his potential bid as he addressed about 700 people at the Iowa Faith & Freedom Coalition’s annual dinner at the fairgrounds in Des Moines,aligning himself with Republican icon President Ronald Reagan.

“We need a choice, not an echo,” he said. “We need, as Reagan said, to paint in bold colors not pale pastels.”

Winning the Iowa audience came on the same day Cruz captured his second consecutive straw poll victory at the summit, a Washington conference hosted by the Family Research Council that draws some of the party’s staunchest activists.

Bragging Rights

While the straw poll delivers bragging rights, it hasn’t been predictive of the primary results. If anything, winning it may be a kiss of death: Mitt Romney won the poll in 2007, only to see Arizona Senator John McCain take the Republican nomination. Representative Ron Paul was the top pick in 2011, a year before Romney was the party’s eventual nominee.

In a 32-minute speech, Cruz was repeatedly interrupted with applause as he cited Psalms, quoted “Amazing Grace,” talked about his parents drinking too much and how his father was beaten in a Cuban prison. He also set his sights on the competition.

“We are seeing today the most radical, the most extreme Democratic Party this country has ever seen,” he said.

Jindal, the Louisiana governor, and Cruz offered starkly different styles, with the only real similarities being that they spoke without notes as they walked around on the stage.

A Rhodes scholar who studied health-care systems at Oxford University, Jindal talked about his background and said Democrats don’t understand that religion is fundamental to the nation’s history.

Founders Intentions

“When they talk about the freedom of religious expression, they mean you’ve got the right to worship the way you want Sunday morning and Wednesday evening and that is it,” he said. “That is not what the founders intended.”

He drew periods of applause, especially when he was critical of the president.

“We are less safe because of his inability to act,” he said. “Our enemies don’t fear us. Our friends don’t trust us,”

Ryan, the 2012 Republican vice presidential nominee, wasn’t scheduled to speak at the dinner. He was in the state today to help raise money for Ernst, and dropped in to the Faith and Freedom coalition meeting.

A House member from neighboring Wisconsin, he made no reference to a potential 2016 bid for himself. Instead, he focused on Obama and Democrats.

“This country is on the wrong trajectory,” Ryan said. “The good news is we know what we need to do to get on the right path.”

Challenging Polls

Despite their promising reception at the event, both Cruz and Jindal would have considerable work to do in Iowa should they run. A CNN/ORC International poll released earlier this month of Iowa Republicans showed them at the bottom of the pack of potential 2016 candidates.

Former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee, who won the Iowa Republican caucuses in 2008, was the top pick at 21 percent among registered Republicans in the survey. Ryan was the second choice at 12 percent.

Vote Now: Do You Approve Or Disapprove of President Obama's Job Performance?

All others were in single digits, with Cruz and Jindal recording less support than Kentucky Senator Rand Paul and Florida Senator Marco Rubio, as well as Governors Chris Christie of New Jersey, Rich Perry of Texas, Scott Walker of Wisconsin and former Florida Governor Jeb Bush.


© Copyright 2021 Bloomberg News. All rights reserved.


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It wasn't much of a contest between the college debate champ and cerebral student of health care systems, even after a top Republican policy guru, Paul Ryan, crashed the party.Ted Cruz and Bobby Jindal, potential 2016 Republican presidential candidates, were the headliners...
ted cruz, wins, values, voter, summit, poll
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2014-43-28
Sunday, 28 September 2014 07:43 AM
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