Don’t freak out at a new poll showing Senator Ted Cruz, R-Texas, losing to a potential Democratic challenger. At least, don’t freak out yet.
The statewide poll conducted by Texas Lyceum shows Rep. Joaquin Castro, D-Texas, with 35 percent support from Texas adults polled. Sen. Cruz receives 31 percent in the theoretical head-to-head matchup. Joaquin Castro is the twin brother of Julian Castro, President Obama’s secretary of Housing and Urban Development — who was widely viewed as a potential vice-presidential candidate for Hillary Clinton. The Castro brothers, if you will, are rising stars among the radical Left.
Rep. Castro has not yet declared his candidacy for U.S Senate. He is, however, traveling the state in a “call to action” tour prelude to his official declaration, which KRISTV reports is expected at the end of this month.
A matchup between Cruz and declared candidate Rep. Beto O’Rourke, D-Texas, shows a 30 percent tie.
Now there are a few important caveats to this poll. 37 percent of registered Texas voters said haven’t given any thought to the 2018 election. What this means is “Don’t know” actually lead the poll — which is why you shouldn’t freak out if you want to see Sen. Cruz reelected.
“Ballot tests conducted this far in advance of an actual election are, at best, useful in gauging the potential weaknesses of incumbents seeking re-election,” said poll conductor Dr. Daron Shaw, a Lyceum Alumnus and Professor at the University of Texas at Austin. “But the substantial percentage of undecided respondents—coupled with the conservative, pro-Republican proclivities of the Texas electorate in recent years— suggest a cautious interpretation.”
The last Texas Democrat to win a U.S. Senate seat was Lloyd Bentsen, and that election was in 1988 — 29 years ago. In 2012, Senator Cruz crushed his Democratic opponent by over one million votes, winning 56.4 percent to 40.1 percent.
It is difficult to imagine a situation where Sen. Cruz loses to a Democratic challenger. But the Texas senator is not taking anything for granted. In fact, he is warning his fellow Republicans that failure to keep their campaign promises could put a Democrat in the White House and wipe out Republican majorities in Congress.
“If we screw all this up, you better believe the American people could elect President Elizabeth Warren,” Cruz said of Republican promises. “If we deliver on all this,” it doesn’t matter who they nominate — we win.”
Those comments echo what Cruz said shortly after President Trump won election.
“If we’re given the White House and both houses of Congress and we don’t deliver, I think there will be pitchforks and torches in the streets,” Cruz said last November. “And I think quite rightly. I think people are so fed up with Washington, this election was a mandate with change and the most catastrophic thing Republicans could do is go back to business as usual.” (For more from the author of “New Poll Says Cruz Could Lose in 2018? Not So Fast” please click HERE)