Texas Senator Ted Cruz announced his presidential run yesterday at Liberty University, an evangelical Christian school in Virginia, and brought up foreign policy. Jerusalem Post:
Cruz received an extended applause for criticism directed at US President Barack Obama’s relationship with Israel. “Instead of a president who boycotts Prime Minister Netanyahu, imagine a president who stands unapologetically with Israel,” Cruz said.
That line generated the single biggest cheer of the speech.
The comment apparently played well in other places, too. Cruz raised half a million dollars after his announcement. NBC:
In the first day that Texas Sen. Ted Cruz is an official presidential candidate, his campaign raised $500,000 – a solid haul for a candidate who is in the bottom tier of polls and has been overshadowed by prolific fundraisers former Florida Governor Jeb Bush and Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker.
The totals include a fundraising event he held in New York City Monday night, just hours after delivering his announcement speech to the Christian conservative student body at Liberty University. His campaign said 60 percent of funds came from large donors and 40 percent from online donations.
Who was at that New York event? Jewish Insider yesterday did a report on “Jews4Cruz”:
Following his announcement at Liberty University in Virginia declaring his presidential bid, Ted Cruz will travel to the Upper West Side of Manhattan for a ‘mega-fundraiser’ on Monday night which, according to a source familiar with the event, will include several prominent Jewish supporters including… Weil Gotshal partner and top Romney 2012 bundler Phil Rosen, Andrew Herenstein, Mark Gerson, Nick Muzin, Raanan Agus, Rob Goldbaum, Drew Scoff, Shimon Rapps, Joe Davidson, and Trudy and Stanley Stern.
Many of these names are diehard supporters of Israel. Agus is a big deal at Goldman Sachs, where Cruz’s wife is a partner, and has close ties to Israel and is on the board of a Zionist organization, alongside Malcolm Hoenlein and the chairman of AIPAC. Gerson heads an information services company and has written in the neoconservative Weekly Standard that hate-filled Palestinians seek to prevent Israelis from experiencing “bourgeois, Western desires.” Herenstein is a Wall Street figure whose twitter account has a video on it, “Boo Hoo Palestine,” stating that two states are a fantasy, Israel has never initiated violence against its neighbors, and “Arabs are jealous of Jews” because the Arab contribution to civilization is “virtually nil.”
Phil Rosen’s twitter profile is hardcore–
Attorney zionist love my 5 kids love Israel love America
and he’s been tweeting praise for Cruz, trashing Peter Beinart, and mocking J Street, the liberal Zionist group as anti-Israel.
Muzin is a 39-year-old doctor who turned hard to the right during the Iraq War and got married in Israel. The JTA calls him a “dynamo” and says that he engineered the rapid rise from the South Carolina statehouse to the U.S. Congress to the Senate by Tim Scott of South Carolina; Muzin helped him to love Israel more.
Cruz hired Muzin last summer as an adviser. Jewish Insider then said that Cruz was courting Israel supporters.
Cruz & Jews Continue Their Love Affair – Sen. Ted Cruz Names Nick Muzin Senior Advisor and Deputy Chief of Staff for Strategy: Nick Muzin, a prominent ‘Jewish Insider,’ will join the 2016 hopeful’s team effective Monday, July 14th. “Muzin, 38, is a physician and attorney, who is currently the director of coalitions for the House Republican Conference, where he oversees strategy and outreach for the 233 Republican members of the House.
Trudy Stern came to believe in Cruz last summer after a visit to Israel. He restored her faith in the US-Israel relationship. She wrote in a Long Island publication:
Amidst all these events, I found myself in the Hamptons for the weekend. While there, I was invited to an intimate gathering to meet Ted Cruz, a Republican senator from Texas (who, rumor has it, is considering a run for the presidency). As a co-president of NORPAC and co-chair of AIPAC for the South Shore of Long Island, I have had the opportunity to meet many senators, both Republicans and Democrats. Most are good, committed people who are dedicated to the betterment of the United States and the protection of Israel. But Senator Cruz was really special…
He demonstrated a depth of knowledge of all the issues facing Israel and how they relate to America. He said that it is possible to change this course, but we need to act now. He then presented a clear path and vision to restore optimism, hope, and a safer world filled with opportunity. His delivery was articulate, well thought out, and dynamic. He was a huge inspiration to me, and for the first time since I returned from Israel, I felt that there was hope for the future, for my children and grandchildren…
As the keynote speaker for a conference held by the newly formed In Defense of Christians group, Senator Cruz was heckled for equating the Christians to the Jews in their persecution by Islamist terror groups. He responded by chastising the group for their bigotry and walking off stage. Just before exiting, he said, “If you will not stand with Israel and the Jews, then I will not stand with you. Good night, and God bless.” These sorts of spontaneous and instinctive actions are a window into a person’s real convictions. Ted Cruz is a true friend, and we are fortunate to have such an outspoken, articulate, and smart advocate for Israel.