The senator from Texas was a guest of the Conservative Opportunity Society, a decades-old organization of House conservatives that meets weekly. King, an Iowa Republican and the society’s chairman, had hosted Cruz at previous such meetings, but this session was particularly significant. Over plates of biscuits and gravy and scrambled eggs, Cruz led a discussion of legislative options to retaliate against President Obama’s recent executive actions shielding millions of illegal immigrants from deportation.
A few hours later, Cruz and King were together again. When King convened a press conference on the U.S. Capitol lawn to protest Obama’s actions, Cruz stood proudly behind him. Once at the microphone, Cruz urged congressional Republicans to starve the government of funding needed to execute Obama’s “lawless” order. When an audience member yelled out to Cruz to run for president in 2016, he smiled broadly. And so did King.
The renewed debate over immigration brought Cruz and King together on this particular day. But such collaboration between the two lawmakers is hardly new. Over the past two years, Cruz and King have quietly forged a personal friendship and powerful political alliance—one that helped derail immigration reform in the 113th Congress and that could give Cruz a critical boost in the 2016 presidential race.
I must ask again, why does Iowa get such out-sized importance in the run-up to the Goat Rodeo, especially when the Caucuses are usually won by whomever charters the most busses from the Senior Center to the exclusive pancake breakfast? Let’s not forget that our old pal One-L managed that feat in the 2012 Goat Rodeo.