The National Enquirer, whose CEO is a longtime friend of Donald Trump, and which has endorsed Donald Trump, has come out firing against Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) , the Tea Party conservative who is Trump’s only serious challenger in the GOP end of the Presidential race. According to the Enquirer, Cruz has had five different mistresses.
Cruz, for his part, has come out swinging, dismissing the story as garbage, accusing the Trump camp of floating the story.
Those who accept the story will make their case as follows:
(a) The National Enquirer has successfully blown the lid on other sex scandals: Gary Hart, John Edwards, Tiger Woods, and even Bill Clinton;
(b) a Washington Times reporter claims to have “confirmed” two of the mistresses;
(c) the $500,000 payment from the Cruz Campaign to the Carly Fiorina campaign smacks as hush money, as one of the alleged mistresses worked for the Fiorina campaign;
(d) one of the alleged mistresses, working for the Donald Trump camp, spilled the beans in a private post.
Cruz supporters will counter, with the following case:
(a) Roger Stone is one of the instigators in this. Stone, a longtime Republican strategist, is well-known for dirty tricks and is himself quite the pervert. (He has, after all, been outed as belonging to at least one swingers club.) Anything coming from Stone should be immediately suspect.
(b) “Confirming” a mistress requires very hard evidence, none of which is provided.
(c) While the NE has broken other scandals, they have also been wrong on many stories, too.
(d) Ditto for the Washington Times.
(e) Given that Carly Fiorina ultimately endorsed Cruz, the $500,000 could easily be related to that. Moreover, Fiorina would have had ample incentive to blow the lid on Cruz if this was part of any hush deal, and Fiorina–a businesswoman–would have known had that been the case.
(f) Some of the alleged mistresses have themselves disavowed any truth to the story.
Both sides have merits in this. While the NE is certainly a third-tier tabloid, they have successfully blown the lid on high-profile scandals. And yes, Cruz supporters are correct in that all we have seen in this story is innuendo and inference.
Here’s my take…
While Cruz’s denial was otherwise sound, he still has left a door open: he has not denied ever being unfaithful to his wife. And that is quite the omission.
If Cruz has been a faithful husband, then this is what he needs to say:
As a public official and a private citizen, I have built my house on trust: when I say I’m going to do something, I do it. I have fought cases that I said I would fight–against the advice of experts–and won. As a Senator, I have kept every one of my promises: in spite of much pressure to compromise and strike deals that would be harmful, I have stuck to my guns and fought the good fight.
As husband, I have kept my promise to my wife. When I took wedding vows, I meant what I said when I chose to “forsake all others.” I also meant what I said when I said “for better or worse”, and “in sickness and in health”, although Heidi has had to deal with the “for worse” whereas I got the “for better” end of the deal.
While I have been tempted, in the words of a former President, “in my heart”, I have remained faithful to the marriage bed. Just as I have kept my promise to Heidi, I have kept my promise to the people of the United States of America, and if you vote for me, you can trust that I will continue to keep that promise.
Unless Cruz can unequivocally say that he has NEVER cheated on his wife, he needs to get out of politics. The last thing we need is another would-be God and Country conservative who can’t keep his pants zipped.
OTOH, if he CAN say that he has been faithful, then he needs to stay the course, as the truth is on his side.
What would it take for me to buy the NE story? Hard evidence: a sex tape, racy photos, sexting messages, unexplainable text messages, a stained dress, forensic proof that puts him in compromising positions. Any of those things come up, and Cruz has a serious problem.
But even in the absence of that type of evidence, if Cruz cannot truthfully say that he has been faithful to his wife, he will be in trouble sooner or later. If that is the case, then he needs to get out of politics, as this will blow up in his face, guaranteed.