is Donald Trump a conservative? Ted Cruz principled limited government constitutional conservative

Marco Rubio is running scared

Dana Milbank, The Washington Post

Rubio gives the same speech everywhere. The most tightly managed candidate in the race, he shuns risk and appears to live in mortal terror of mentioning Donald Trump, the man who dominates the race. Rubio’s determination not to be taken off of this bland message, or to engage Trump, may give the impression that he is above the fray. But it also makes him look weak and callow.

The Great GOP Realignment

Joshua Green, Bloomberg Politics

Add Cruz’s 28 percent to Trump’s 24 percent, and more than half of caucusgoers supported an outsider openly despised by the GOP establishment. Voters had heeded party elders for decades by nominating establishment figures such as Bob Dole, George W. Bush, John McCain, and Mitt Romney. The Iowa result was nothing less than a revolt, and the message to Republican leaders unmistakable: Drop dead!

DC Insiders Move To Shore Up Rubio

Daniel Strauss, Politico

Rubio's rapidly increasing list of establishment congressional backers has now vaulted him ahead of former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush in the so-called "endorsement primary."

Donald Trump bid badly wounded in Iowa

Timothy Stanley, CNN

The reason why we were reluctant to tip Cruz as the likely winner, however, was because we were all suckered by The Donald's hype. Ted Cruz has a bounce but will be eclipsed in a lot of media chatter about Trump's defeat and Rubio's rise. Trump obviously isn't going anywhere -- he's still way ahead in polling in New Hampshire. But he's badly wounded. The Trump pitch was always that he was a winner. He won by promising to win. Now that he's lost, his halo of golden hair will slip.

Cruz bets Iowa pitch will also play in N.H.

Seth McLaughlin, The Washington Times

“Marco Rubio was part of the ‘Gang of Eight,’” said Jean Johnson. “That was it for me.” The 77-year-old voter said Mr. Cruz has won her support for the way in which he fought the “establishment” and the “inside-the-Beltway boys who think they have a lifetime position.

Marco Rubio is the establishment GOP's new kid in town

John Kass, The Chicago Tribune

Rubio, the senator from Florida, came in a victorious third in the Iowa Republican caucuses, or at least that's how the establishment GOP and their handmaidens in establishment media will spin it. He's now the heir to the Bush family establishment legacy whether the Bushes like it or not.

My Quick Takeaways from the Iowa Caucuses

Richard A. Viguerie, CHQ Chairman

To the surprise and disappointment of the establishment media, the conservative movement is alive and well. It is united, working and voting, which points to a movement conservative governing America in 2017.

Why Trump Lost Iowa

John McCormack, The Weekly Standard

What most analysts and pollsters got wrong is that they believed a big turnout would mean an electorate with a smaller percentage of evangelical Christians. In fact, according to one entrance poll, evangelicals made up 64 percent of the 2016 electorate. And that pretty much explains Cruz's victory. He won 34 percent of evangelicals, while Trump won 22 percent and Rubio won 21 percent. Among the 36 percent of caucusgoers who aren't evangelicals, Trump took 29 percent, Rubio took 26 percent, and Cruz took 18 percent.

Cruz Cruises to Victory

Rebecca Berg and Carl M. Cannon, Real Clear Politics

Cruz and his team envisioned a national campaign from the start, but it necessarily depended on a strong showing in Iowa. His success here hinged on bringing together factions of the conservative wing that have fractured in recent presidential elections. “If conservatives unite,” Cruz liked to say, “we win.”

Ted Cruz Restores Sanity To The GOP

Erick Erickson, The Resurgent

It turns out that voters showed up to stop Trump. Seventy-five percent of Republican voters in Iowa voted against rank jackassery. Urban Republicans went with Rubio. Suburban and most rural Republicans went with Cruz. The voters of the GOP refused to have their party hijacked by a man who has excelled at identifying problems, but confused that with offering solutions.

Cruz caucus eve rally hits Trump

W. James Antle III, The Washington Examiner

"This race is down to Ted Cruz and Donald Trump," said Iowa social conservative leader Bob Vander Plaats. "No matter who you support, if you are not comfortable with Donald Trump as the nominee, you need to vote for Ted Cruz."

Why I’m Endorsing Ted Cruz For President

John Hawkins, Townhall

The fact that John Boehner has lost his job and that so many people are blaming the GOP leadership in Congress for the seething anger of Republican voters this year reveals the biggest reason the establishment Republicans hate Cruz: They were wrong and he was right.

Handicapping the GOP Race Past Iowa

Stuart Rothenberg, Roll Call

Establishment elections guru Stu Rothenberg says under normal circumstances, if Trump were to win the first two contests, the race would be over. But this year is not normal (as well already have seen). A credible Cruz showing in Iowa could well keep him in the race as a conservative alternative to Trump, and a strong Rubio showing in Iowa, and possibly New Hampshire, would anoint him as the pragmatic alternative in the race.

Tony Perkins endorses Ted Cruz

Hanna Trudo, Politico

Speaking to Megyn Kelly on Fox News' "The Kelly File" on Tuesday night, Tony Perkins, the evangelical president of the Family Research Council said, "Ted is a constitutional conservative who will fight for faith, family and freedom. He will defend our right to believe and live according to those beliefs. Our families will be protected and freedom will once again mean something in America.”

Cruz, Trump and the Missing White Voters

Sean Trende, Real Clear Politics

Trende's theory is that Mitt Romney’s wealth and upper-class demeanor turned off blue-collar conservative voters, and that if the GOP could find a candidate to motivate these voters sufficiently, it could narrow the gap between them and Democrats and offset some of the losses Republicans could suffer due to demographic shifts.

The 2016 Election and the Failures of the “Governing Wing”

Daniel Larison, The American Conservative

It is more than a little odd that Marco Rubio has been dubbed the savior of the Republican “governing wing” when the only major thing he tried to do in the Senate was a complete flop and he has been conspicuous by his absence from the actual work of being a senator for much of his time in office. 

Ted Cruz's Revolution

Molly Ball, The Atlantic

His fellow senators publicly denounce him and call him names. They yell at him behind closed doors and complain about him to their lobbyist friends. They hate him with a wild, deranging passion. The Beltway grandees, with their consulting contracts and expensive suits, would sooner die or move to Europe than live in the America he would govern. And Ted Cruz revels in their hatred.

Why the GOP Establishment is Warming to Trump

Timothy Daughtry, Townhall

Trump’s frequent assessment of governmental incompetence as the cause of America’s sad state should concern conservatives. Few in the conservative movement would share Trump’s assessment that the nation’s disastrous course stems from managerial incompetence. Conservatives largely view Obama, not as a bumbling incompetent, but as a dedicated leftist who uses Alinskyite tactics to subvert the Constitution.

Palin and the GOP’s Uncertain Trumpeters

Peggy Noonan, The Wall Street Journal

In the short term Sarah Palin's endorsement of Donald Trump is said to help in Iowa. It would have helped Ted Cruz if she’d chosen him, because for the first time it would have drawn a line, for some people, between real conservatives and Mr. Trump. So it’s good for Mr. Trump she’s off the table and on his side. But in the long run it’s probably a wash. 

Palin and Trump: a double act that irks ideological conservatives

Edward Luce, The Financial Times

“Unlike Donald Trump, Ted Cruz holds the constitution in such reverence that he does not make violating it into a cheap applause line,” Mr Viguerie wrote.