My colleague Greg Sargent does a fine job calling out Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Tex.) for shedding crocodile tears over concern people will die trying to get into the country illegally under the Gang of Eight plan. The argument is as insincere as it is wrong (with enhanced border security fewer people will come). But Cruz doesn’t stop there.
Today he tweets: “If Gang of 8 bill passes, those newly legalized are exempted from Obamacare. HUGE incentive for employers to hire them instead of Americans.”
This is sheer nonsense. A Senate aide who actually understands the bill shakes his head in disgust. He tells me,”The G8 bill specifically forbids illegal immigrants from receiving Obamacare subsidies. Based upon this statement, does Senator Cruz oppose that G8 provision? No.” Like some of Cruz’s colleagues, this aide is incredulous. “If pressed he would say the illegal immigrants should not get Obamacare subsidies just like Sens. Rubio, Graham, McCain, and Flake would say. In fact, I bet Sen. Cruz would be one of the people on the floor of the Senate leading the charge it anyone dared to change it,” he says. “But it again shows that the opposition can be hypocritical and duplicitous in their criticisms.”
It also shows the unfortunate trajectory of Cruz’s career. He is smart, articulate and capable, but he prefers to use his skills to enhance his appeal with the right wing and to posture rather than work for his constituents and for the country. What a waste.