Oh dear, the National Enquirer has come out with a story claiming evidence of multiple sexual trysts by presidential candidate Senator Ted Cruz.
Worse yet for the Cruz camp, the framework within the article is structurally very concerning:
The National Enquirer is indeed a tabloid – and as such there are various grains of salt that should be applied when reviewing anything they present.
However, that said, they have been unfortunately accurate for more than a few presidential hopefuls: Gary Hart, Jesse Jackson and John Edwards to name a few of the more infamous examples.
Beyond the story itself there’s a few presenting elements which point to a high degree of confidence, and as a consequence ‘legal avoidance’, on the publishers’ part.
Firstly, they post pictures of the collective mistresses. NE would never legally “go there” if they did not hold a very reasonable certainty the outlined players were factually part of the story.
Secondly, there’s at least one face in the group that is easily identifiable.
When you accept the NE editorial/legal requirement for research and attributed comment prior to publication, you recognize there is more than a strong probability each of the outlined group (pictured) was contacted prior to publication; and one of those is very close to the Donald Trump campaign. Ergo, it’s entirely likely presidential candidate Donald Trump knew this story was coming out.
Which puts candidate Trump’s prior discussion and opinion of media libel in a strangely much larger, and more substantially prescient, aspect. 3-D political strategy not withstanding.
The National Enquirer has essentially baited the hook in a typical manner and one famously utilized by Andrew Breitbart.
So now they wait and see if, and how, the Cruz campaign responds. It is entirely possible the story could explode exponentially depending on the severity of any denials or admissions therein.
UPDATE: Since the publication first hit the newsstands (depends on region) the Twitter-sphere has lit up with conversation about the scandal. It appears many political followers believe they have identified two of the blurred out images within the National Enquirer story.
If these people on twitter are correct, this story is not soon to be easily dismissed by the Ted Cruz presidential campaign:
3 of Cruz’s alleged mistresses have been identified: Katrina Pierson, Sarah Isgur Flores, and Amanda Carpenter.
Interestingly Sarah Isgur Flores, in addition to being a well known political operative, was also the campaign manager for Carly Fiorina. And that little factoid brings an earlier discovery into question; where the Super-PAC for Ted Cruz (Keep the Promise) actually sent the Super-PAC for Carly Fiorina (Carly for America “CfA”) $500,000 (link).
That distribution from one candidate’s Super-PAC to another, raised the eyebrows of the Federal Election Commission who inquired about the rather unusual transaction.
Ambition for Two […] They’d met on the 2000 George W. Bush campaign, when they worked three cubicles apart, and in the years since, they’d gone from an apartment in Northern Virginia to a 19th-floor condo in Houston to a series of three-star hotels in early-primary states. Heidi had taken an unpaid leave from her lucrative job at Goldman Sachs to join Ted on the trail.
But in the earliest days of their marriage, they weren’t always together. At a time when Ted Cruz felt unsatisfied with his track in Washington, he made a decision to take a high-profile job in Austin — as Texas’s solicitor general — that provided a testing ground for his conservative arguments but also forced him to move 1,500 miles from Heidi, who continued working at the Treasury Department in Washington.
The job ultimately helped to launch Ted Cruz’s political career. It also nearly backfired: He and Heidi weathered several years of strained, long-distance commuting. And when Heidi finally moved to Texas, the strain only grew. She fell into a depression, what Cruz calls the couple’s “difficult chapter.”
Cruz, now 45, looks back on that decision 13 years ago to leave Washington as an essential part of his rise as a top-tier Republican presidential candidate. The choice bore the Cruz hallmarks: ambition, a willingness to take major risks and confidence that he could pull it off. In an interview with The Washington Post, Cruz also said that the move also shows how he and Heidi work in tandem. They both held aspirations for their careers, and they were willing to live apart to chase their goals. (read more)