Just five short years after the formation of the right-wing branch of the Conservative base, the Tea Party has solidified it’s standing by holding up legislation and creating drastically Conservative laws across the nation. The grass-roots wing of the Republican Party has not yet established a new party line, which opens the door to the idea of two of the most notable Tea Party sweethearts to possibly go head to head in a battle of voters for the 2016 Presidential run.
Some ask could Rand Paul, Independent from Kentucky, and Ted Cruz, Republican from Texas, possibly be on the same ballot, allowing for two Tea Party activists to make a run for President. The latest straw poll gave Paul and Cruz a one-two finish with voters and could bring the Tea Party head to head with itself. History has shown that races involving more than two serious candidates significantly change the dynamics of an election. It is long thought that without Ralph Nader in the 2000 race there would not have been an election debacle of 2000. Strategists confirm that if only George W. Bush and Al Gore had been on the ballot that it would have been a clear and clean win for either candidate. What isn’t clear amongst strategists is who that clear winner would have been.
The likelihood of both Rand Paul and Ted Cruz vying for the Presidency in the same election is low, but the actions of the Tea Party has long been against the status quo and it is wise never to expect the norm from the right-wing base. But one has to concede the possibility of the idea. There is nothing limiting the possibility, as they’re technically both members of separate parties. The biggest challenge would be the legitimacy of a run by Canadian born Ted Cruz. It all depends on whom you ask, but with the rise of the birthed challenge to President Obama’s legitimacy, the same challenge would surly be on the minds of Democrats to challenge if he so decides to run.
With the idea of the Tea Party sweethearts battling for the voters of 2016, neither Paul nor Cruz has confirmed a run for the Presidency. Both have categorically denied they have even given serious thought to a run, but both have been very active in fundraising for the 2016 GOP election and both have been active spokesmen for GOP causes on the election trail. Both Paul and Cruz have been stepping into a larger spotlight on the International field; getting involved in US interests in Libya and Russia.
Both possible candidates have been networking with 2014 candidates nationwide. Cruz has recently endorsed fellow Houstonian Sen. John Cornyn, who is facing a tough challenge this year in his re-election efforts. As the Senator faced a run-off, Cruz played it safe by waiting for the most recent election results before throwing his name behind Cornyn. Also, Rand Paul is playing actively to the base by filing lawsuits against the current administration and the NSA, which many believe, has placed him at the top in the polls for the 2016 run with the Tea Party. Both sides of the aisle very agree that 2016 is lining up for an interesting election year. It would be impractical not to consider a two Tea Party battle for voters in 2016 with sweethearts stealing the spotlight at every turn. Anything is possible when it comes to the Tea Party. And a double run by Tea Party favorites would most certainly fall into the realm of possibility in today’s political environment.
Opinion by Kimberly Beller