LETTER FROM AMERICA: Juicy stories from US election cycle
THERE is never a dull moment for news reporters in the United States during election cycles. Let us start with a man generally regarded as an evil genius in the Republican Party, Senator Ted Cruz.
In order to win the first primary state of Iowa, where one third of the voters are evangelical, one needs religious skills to win them over.
Cruz had a team of 1 500 team leaders to speak on his behalf at all the village caucuses.
That was impressive.
Iowans raise corn (maize) and cattle both of which rely heavily on subsidies from the US government. Cruz, a Harvard and Yale Law School law graduate, won many prizes in the debating clubs there. His Achilles heel is that he is a Canadian born Cuban, pretending to be a dyed-in-the-wool American white evangelical.
So, he found a soft spot among Iowans by showing off his religious repertoire. His father is a missionary and so is his wife’s father. Both helped him in the door-to-door campaign. He memorised juicy verses from the Bible, such as: “Ye shall know them by their works.”
Under the radar, Cruz spread the message that Dr Ben Carson, a brother, who was expected to take the second place there, had withdrawn from the race.
In one instance, a Cruz fraudster made the announcement in the presence of Dr Carson’s wife. Of course he was caught out, but the announcement, coming just a few hours before the voting, did the damage.
Now this is the juicy part.
The senator turned out to be a complete fraud. In the tax year 2015, he gave nothing to the church, cheating the church out of its tithing.
The revelation that Cruz, who said that he was a Christian, and that he was absolutely to be trusted, was really a crook and a dissembler came too late for the Iowans.
But more is to come.
Cruz condemned Wall Street bankers for driving widows and orphans into the ground. The senator secretly secured a sweetheart loan of US$600 000 from Goldman Sachs at zero interest.
These revelations damaged him badly as he tried the same old tricks in New Hampshire. As I write, he is in my backyard in South Carolina trying to fool us.
Marco Rubio is a one-term senator from Florida, young, handsome, 42-years-old, with three beautiful children as they say.
Rubio almost had us all fooled.
The establishment picked him as their man, dressed him up, and programmed him with 30 second speeches which he memorised. All went well with the young Hispanic guy who had a wonderful story to tell. “I owe the US a debt which I will never be able to repay,” was his song.
But his star fell from grace when he met an old embittered Governor Chris Christie of New Jersey. Christie, a bully, and a former federal prosecutor, grilled him on his competence. He accused Rubio of being a robot, of having memorised 30 second speeches, being an empty suit.
The young inexperienced starlet, collapsed under the withering prosecutorial questioning of Christie. Having been programmed, he could not answer questions outside his queue box.
Like Pavlov’s dog, he began to bark certain words which his handlers had drilled in his Manchurian brain. “Let’s dispel with this fiction that Barack Obama does not know what he is doing,” he repeated it four times, answering no question in particular.
A Manchurian candidate is a person whose brain has been substituted with another, and makes robotic answers in response to certain words.
This action resulted in a kamikaze suicide for both Rubio and Christie.
Rubio was caught out as a robot, mouthing memorised verses while Christie’s vicious attack showed him as an evil man.
Christie bowed out of the race. Rubio is making his last stand in South Carolina, even as we speak.
The real juicy bit, if it were not a tragic story, is that of Governor Jebb Bush of Florida.
Jebb has two family members who were presidents, which is his misfortune.
His predecessors caused two “oil wars”, leaving the US in debt.
His handlers collected US$100 million from Texas oilmen and other shady businessmen as they had done for his two predecessors.
Enter Donald Trump.
Jebb did not reckon with a mad, plain spoken billionaire, Donald Trump who flies around the country in his own Trump jet airliner.
He sometimes uses a Trump helicopter.
Trump, a graduate of the elite Wharton School of Business, cares nothing for correct speech.
He simply rules out Bush as “bought” to his face.
Trump insinuates that Jebb, who has a Mexican wife, is planning to flood the US with illegal immigrants. About foreign policy, Trump argued that the Bushes have done enough harm. “No, no, not another Bush,” Trump said, dismissing him with a facial impression of utter contempt.
If Bush was hurt, he had a long way to go.
Jebb brought his 91-year-old mother and former president George W Bush, his brother, to help him campaign.
Trump insinuated that it is like a kid who can’t fight his own battles and “calls on mama”.
He also said a word which begins with a letter of the alphabet. Jebb almost cried.
Trump says that donors should get their money back from Jebb.
Trump has changed the face of politics.