“PROSELYTIZE”: using faith to recruit someone to join one’s party, institution, or cause…
There is a strategy, albeit a rather divisive strategy, which can be deployed politically by those intentionally selecting a very specific gathering of supporters.
In a highly fractured presidential bid, this proselytizing strategy may even garner enough of a base to mount a bid amid a larger field of candidates. However, it is exceptionally narrow -hence works only amid large numbers of possible options- and can ultimately only gain the advocate a small percentage of the overall audience.
The strategy can NEVER win a general election.
Current evidence reflects this approach is the preferred direction of Team Ted Cruz and the presidential campaign therein.
When such a strategy is deployed amid the reality of an increasingly toxic and divisive anti-religious populist leftism – the approach is strengthened. Indeed, the narrow appeal, when contrast against examples of football coaches unable to bow their heads in prayer, actually broadens the base of sympathy from an objective audience.
However, in the larger political deployment the polarization becomes self-defeating and presents with risks that should be consequentially avoided.
The alignment of Ted Cruz with Glenn Beck and David Barton speaks to both a profitable business branding/marketing approach, and simultaneously affords candidate Cruz an almost captive audience.
The intersection of religion as a business (2015 Beck Media) and presidential politics (2015 Cruz campaign) is a road that narrows with each mile traveled. It would serve all non-Cruz candidates, and specifically Donald Trump, to avoid the pitfalls within it.
Ceding ground to an opponent willing to stake their campaign almost exclusively on religious based affiliations is not only prudent, it is wise.
Candidate Cruz has isolated himself from effectiveness within the very institution he holds membership, the Senate. In essence, for the sake of a nail -which may or may not be- based upon purity, he has diminished his influence. Senator Cruz, by approach, is now relegated to the echo-chamber of his own inconsequential staff. Unfortunately, his constituents are now the victims of the decision-making; and if history serves any predictive sense, he will be challenged and defeated based on an ineffectual record.
Thus we fully understand both the praise and admonition from former Harvard Law Professor Alan Derschowitz who cast Cruz as a brilliant mind, but warned of an inability to accept, or move toward, counter positions. Put another, more familiar, way: “at what cost do you desire to be right”?
There is no doubt that 5 to 8% of the “conservative” electorate will support a Cruz campaign. It is also entirely possible for that figure to grow to around 15% when you add those willing to provide a faith-based opportunity.
However, beyond that element – you hit a dead end where the crowd evaporates, and expenditures to garner additional support are weighed amid the law of diminishing returns.
Beck has carved out a business model, a media-market, where an audience is willing to accept a soccer ball and teddy bear campaign almost entirely on faith alone. Ask anyone who participated in the 08/28/10 “Restoring Honor” DC event what was the goal while they were there; you’ll find few with a direct answer, and even fewer still who consider Beck to hold any value or benefit.
Candidate Cruz is following a business model, which can provide affluence, but cannot provide presidential influence – there is absolutely no winning presidential road map there; nor is there a reason to chase it.
Stick with what works 100% of the time….