There's Nothing Funny About Ted Cruz

by Rosie Holden Vacanti Gilroy

Ted Cruz, the Texas senator trying desperately to win the GOP presidential nomination, just took his outward dislike of his opponent, Donald Trump, to a whole new level. In his Wednesday night appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live, Ted Cruz joked about Donald Trump, perhaps in an attempt to ingratiate himself to voters. While Cruz's jokes on the late-night show were not all terrible, it's hard to laugh at anything the senator says or does considering how entirely un-funny it would be if he were elected president — the candidate has suggested that Muslim neighborhoods should be policed and wants to make abortion practically illegal.

Known more for his speeches condemning the Obama administration than for his sense of humor, Cruz made headlines after his Wednesday night foray into comedy with a particular joking jab at Trump. When Kimmel asked Cruz, "Who do you like better, Obama or Trump?" Cruz grimaced before he responded that although he "dislikes Obama's policies more... Donald is a unique individual." The senator then added — without prompting from Kimmel — "If I were in my car and getting ready to reverse and saw Donald in the backup camera, I'm not confident which pedal I'd push."

The joke, which was clearly all Cruz's doing, was in reference to an earlier segment on the show in which April Fool's Day pranks were carried out by placing scary images in car back-up cameras. Undoubtedly, Cruz isn't the only person who would be scared to see Trump's face in a back-up camera. But then again, Cruz's presence in a back-up camera might be even scarier.

Later in his late-night-TV appearance, Cruz answered Kimmel's query into the senator's favorite cereal with another joke, "serial killer or cereal," before sharing that his favorite cereal is not what he figures people would expect — Captain Crunch — but rather Mueslix.

Kimmel engaged Cruz in a discussion of more serious matters, too, questioning the senator on his proposal to police Muslim neighborhoods and his belief that Obamacare is a failure. Cruz stood by his previous proposal and statements, but joked to Kimmel, "I'll cross you off the list for Homeland Security."

When Cruz joked that Kimmel's "salt and pepper" beard was a "distinguished look," the comedian's response hit home: "You’re not going to put me on the Muslim watch list, because of this are you?” asked Kimmel. With that rebut, Kimmel highlighted the extremity of Cruz's xenophobia, quickly making the audience cease their laughter.

The morning after his late-night appearance, Cruz was back on the campaign trail — the Wisconsin primary is on Tuesday, and The New York Times recently reported that Cruz may beat Trump in the Midwestern state — and the joke was over. There is nothing funny about Cruz condemning Planned Parenthood, his suggestion that abortion providers be punished, or his proposal to police Muslim neighborhoods.

Ted Cruz may joke, but his policies are no joke, and would significantly curtail women's rights and spread xenophobia throughout the United States if he were to be elected president.