Ted Cruz defends Kim Davis with brazen ignorance of 8th grade civics

Constitutional conservative Ted Cruz is mad on the Internet about President Obama lawlessly and tyrannically throwing Kim Davis in jail over her deeply held Christian beliefs.

Well, kinda.

The only words in that sentence that are correct are “Ted Cruz,” “mad on the Internet” and “Kim Davis.” The rest has been inferred by Cruz in this word salad of a press release following today’s federal court ruling that held Davis in contempt for refusing to abide by an earlier court order.

As Cruz wrote:

I stand with Kim Davis. Unequivocally. I stand with every American that the Obama Administration is trying to force to chose between honoring his or her faith or complying with a lawless court opinion.

Cruz, who presumably took 8th grade civics before he clerked on the Supreme Court and served as Texas’s solicitor general, surely knows that nothing about Kim Davis’s case had anything to do with the Obama administration. He surely knows that there are three branches of our federal government, with many powers delegated to the states — the enforcement of marriage laws being among them.

And one would think that, as closely as Cruz has been following these marriage equality cases, he would know that the Obama administration, while it certainly had thoughts and feelings on the issue, never acted against Kim Davis. The Supreme Court decided Obergefell, the governor of Kentucky declared that Davis had to abide by the ruling, a federal district court ordered her to comply by the governor’s decision and the Supreme Court declined to hear her appeal.

Where does the Obama administration factor in to all of this? Nowhere. Does Ted Cruz care? Not in the least. He’s too busy making common cause with Mike Huckabee — who has spent the better part of today warning that today’s ruling amounts to the “criminalization of Christianity” — and others warning of the coming Christian Holocaust.

In familiar fashion, Cruz, et al derive this fear from a willful misinterpretation of the First Amendment. As Cruz wrote:

Those who are persecuting Kim Davis believe that Christians should not serve in public office. That is the consequence of their position. Or, if Christians do serve in public office, they must disregard their religious faith–or be sent to jail.

Nope. Not even kinda. Christians are more than welcome to serve in public office, and they don’t need to disregard their faith. What they absolutely do need to do, however, is not let that faith interfere with the different or non-faiths of others.

Thomas Jefferson was remarkably clear on this point.

Jon Green graduated from Kenyon College with a B.A. in Political Science and high honors in Political Cognition. He worked as a field organizer for Congressman Tom Perriello in 2010 and a Regional Field Director for President Obama's re-election campaign in 2012. Jon writes on a number of topics, but pays especially close attention to elections, religion and political cognition. Follow him on Twitter at @_Jon_Green, and on Google+. .

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73 Responses to “Ted Cruz defends Kim Davis with brazen ignorance of 8th grade civics”

  1. TrueGamer says:

    Thankfully, this should hurt both Cruz and Huckabee. Neither belong in political office of any kind. People who feel they have a right to trample on the human rights of others, like Kim Davis did, should be persecuted. They’re no better than fanatical muslims who think all non-muslims should die.

  2. guest says:

    Wow. We progressives can say a lot of things, but calling a highly-accomplished scholar ignorant seems …. well … a bit sensational.

  3. FredSlice says:

    What exactly were “the doctrines of Jesus” that Jefferson was talking about?

  4. NotTelevised says:

    Not unless you’re demanding fundamentalist Jeffersonianism. Nobody’s suggesting we follow TJ’s writings as heaven-sent scripture, but simply as the law this country has chosen. Cherry picking is ignoring the state of adultery you live in (bible verse) to cast stones at homosexuals (bible verse). See there? She chose to follow one demand of her God and forget about another. Very different. Also, in a free society, one can choose whatever doctrines they wish, including Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Zoroastrianism,….. and none.

  5. Butch1 says:

    No doubt, but remember, democrats from that part of the country are a different breed. They tend to be more DINO than the old brand of democrat I used to vote for. I’m an Independent now. I got tired of them lying about what they were going to do and never following through with it.

  6. FredSlice says:

    The Dred Scott decision was a good decision based on the well established Biblical principle that the negro race is inferior and that the institution of negro slavery was ordained by God.

  7. el_polacko says:

    just for the record, this kim person is a democrat. hatin’ on gay people is a non-partisan activity.

  8. playingwithplato says:

    Thomas Jefferson was also very clear on the doctrines of Jesus being good for members of a free society to follow? Shall we cherry pick?

  9. Butch1 says:

    I wish I could be around to see the day when no religion was allowed to interfere with the government, period and that it wouldn’t be used as a litmus test for everything.

    We have way too much of this as it is. We do not need a theocracy in this country.

  10. Butch1 says:

    We have two parts of the Congress run by the republicans. Now they feel they have the right to come out from under their rocks and try and take over the rest of the country by grabbing the Executive Branch with their idiocy and trying to make this country a Theocracy. When it has been weakened to this point, now is their chance and this is why the crazies are out in full bloom screaming their religious heads off thumping their bibles as loudly as they can. It doesn’t matter that this decision has already been decided. They fought us all the way to the Supreme Court and they will NOT take NO for an answer. They are going to continue fighting us and ignore the court’s decision and hide behind religion.

  11. no lie says:

    when she gets out, i’m going to get a marriage license from her. I’ll mention that i am born again, and i want to have my hands marry my junk.

  12. Indigo says:

    Just saying . . .

  13. Indigo says:

    I offer a 50 mile range from the shore. Living in Orlando, half way down the peninsula and half way from each shore, the dumb is so deep here that the Liberty Council lawyers who are defending Kim Davis are headquartered right here in the Big O. Since it’s about 60 miles to each of our two shores, I visualize a 50 miles limit. It could be less.

  14. JohnnyD says:

    Some people consider the Great Lakes to be America’s “North Coast”, due to their extent and resemblance to “seas”. And Minnesota DOES abut Lake Superior, does it not?

    Based on that, Minnesota, Michigan, Wisconsin, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania and New York could all be considered “coastal”.

    But then we don’t even want to bring up what some people consider California, or by extension, the entire west coast. Not particularly flattering in most cases. But we take such things in stride as the expressions of concealed longing and envy which they actually represent, and don’t let it “harsh our buzz”, to coin a phrase.

    Which is not to make any excuses for Kansas, they’re in a class by themselves, and I think it’s the Special Ed. class. Hopefully they’ll elect a tomato as governor next time, it’ll be a big step up for them, demonstrating that they DO know the difference between a useful addition to government and a vegetable.

  15. JohnnyD says:

    A man who is genuinely stupid is probably far more trustworthy than an intelligent man play-acting at being a stupid one simply for the purpose of obtaining power. In the same way that planning and executing a murder is premeditated evil, whereas shooting the person one is surprised to catch in bed with their spouse is a crime of passion.

    Also, his act bespeaks volumes about his true regard for the voters he is attempting to appeal to. Lying about who they are just to get the job doesn’t bode well for their perfomance once they get it, and no longer have to maintain the subterfuge.

  16. JohnnyD says:

    The link to the Thomas Jefferson quote is not functional, at least from my IPad. Anyone have an alternate w/same info?

    Funny how the self-styled “Christians” promoting this nonsense of a “Christian America” never feel the same “accomodations” should also be made for members of other religions, racial groups, etc.

    It seems those others and their rights to various freedoms don’t count for much in an America founded on Christianity. Not surprising, since to jerks like Kim, they don’t seem to count for much now in an America not founded on it.

    In spite of the pseudo-Christians’ wailings about their own “persecution”, the only ones being persecuted here are the taxpayers of the State of Kentucky, forced to pay the salary of a religious zealot who has no intention of performing her job, and who oddly made no mention of her deep-seated need to place her belief in The Bible ahead of her work for The State while reciting her Oath of Office. That alone should invalidate her election and allow for her immediate dismissal by the Governor. Elected or not, she essentially lied on the single most critical question of her employment application, whether she would serve ALL the citizens of the State if elected. That’s an immediate termination offense for just about anyone, anywhere, and it’s not the same thing as failing to live up to campaign promises. Even half the people who voted for her expect those to be baloney from the start. An oath of office, however, is supposed to be legally binding, which is why they “SWEAR” to uphold it, just as persons giving testimony in a court of law “SWEAR” to tell the truth. And like them, they should be legally liable for contempt or fraud for failing to uphold that vow.

    I hope people can see from things like this that the rights of non-Christian Americans would count for nothing at all in an actual Christian America. Although that’s usually not mentioned by creeps like Huck whilst railing about the looming threats posed to us by the non-Christian hordes across the seas/borders seeking to “destroy our way of life”. Always remember the “our” in that statement is NOT ALL-INCLUSIVE.

    Recall what happened to the Japanese Americans during WWII, or the Jews of Europe during the same period. Then recall what happened during The Inquisition. I leave it to you to judge whether an America aligned under the Christianity offered by people like Kim and Huck would be able to resist actions similar to any of these. Or all of them together. My guess is no, no, and no, based on the decidedly non-Christian behaviors thus far demonstrated by these Fascists In Disguise and all their supporters. I suspect they could give Stalin and the Holocaust a run for their money, as easily as they consider “sinners” to be synonymous with “enemies”. They seem to have no trouble deciding for themselves who are and are not the citizens whom they are required to serve.

    Nobody desiring to “return America to its’ Christian roots” has a clue about the founding bases of this nation or an understanding of its’ Constitution. They certainly don’t demonstrate any understanding of the religion they claim to build their lives around, either, nor do they reflect favorably upon the man upon whom it is based. The last thing these people need is a position of responsibility over others, as they can’t demonstrate a capacity to be responsible for themselves. So they certainly don’t need a job in government, and they certainly don’t need access to the world’s largest collection of nuclear weapons, either, unless they can LEAVE THEIR RELIGION AT HOME.

  17. FredSlice says:

    Name them.

  18. bpollen says:

    I don’t do drugs, city slicker. And YOU are the smart one?

  19. LADY MABELINE says:

    I am sipping a cocktail on the beach. Where the fuck are you hayseed?

  20. bpollen says:

    So you admit you’re wrong, darlin’?

  21. LADY MABELINE says:

    Give it a rest honey.

  22. Bruce says:

    How did we get to such a place of stupidity, there is no clearer and easy case to determine the right conclusion. Do your job or resign, we do not make exceptions to the law.

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  24. bpollen says:

    Highest per capita income for a county is Loudoun County, VA. Outside of D.C. Seems that, by your yardstick, Malibu is dumber than the greater D.C. metro…

  25. bpollen says:

    “Minnesota also gave us Michele Bachmann…”

    Hey, everybody flakes once in a while…

  26. Larry Linn says:

    Would a conservative Catholic clerk be permitted to deny Kim
    Davis a marriage license for her second, third and fourth marriages, because
    the Catholic Church does not acknowledge divorces?

  27. MoonDragon says:

    I’ve suggest a number of times in a number of venues that we should replace the by now adulterated beyond original meaning, magazine sales gimmick that is the Pledge of Allegiance with the Preamble to the Constitution.

  28. White&Blue says:

    Lawless court opinion? Wait, what?

  29. BeccaM says:

    No, but he was brought here and subjected to a Texas education in religious schools. Which likely explains much about him.

  30. BeccaM says:


    * = Translated: “Bring me cheesecake now or die!”

  31. DoverBill says:

    I was wondering how it long it would take before this was all Obama’s fault.

    Thanks, Ted.

  32. slavdude says:

    Of course, Minnesota also gave us Michele Bachmann, but I suppose that was for the entertainment value. (Not knocking Minnesota, however. Everyone I have met from there has been awesome, and it is a great place to visit.)

  33. bpollen says:

    Ummm… you might wanna do some research before you make statements about geographically based intelligence. California is the TOP agricultural producer of all 50 states, which makes them even MORE farm oriented than Iowa. You are aware, I’m assuming, that California is a big state and MOST of the state is made up of OTHER than beach communities? Here’s stats for 2013:

    Milk — $7.6 billion

    Almonds — $5.8 billion

    Grapes — $5.6 billion

    Cattle, Calves — $3.05 billion

    Strawberries — $2.2 billion

    Walnuts — $1.8 billion

    Lettuce — $1.7 billion

    Hay — $1.6 billion

    Tomatoes — $1.2 billion

    Nursery plants— $1.2 billion

    Even Texas wouldn’t put farms on beaches…

  34. BeccaM says:

    Ah, the cornfield! :-)

  35. Moderator3 says:

    She actually tried too hard. She went to the place where bad trolls go.

  36. BeccaM says:

    You’ll have to troll much, much harder than that.

  37. John Ranta says:

    Cruz is a lawyer, quite a brilliant one, actually. So we can assume he doesn’t believe any of the tripe in his press release. He’s just pandering to the idiots in his party. Which, as Trump is demonstrating, is a damn good strategy. Spew fundamentalist, racist, homophobic, nativist, misogynistic stuff, and Republican voters will laud you as the next Reagan. Who was also quite good at spewing stupid stuff, come to think of it. It was his specialty. Cruz is Reaganesque!

  38. 2karmanot says:

    I think America is at the crossroads. I’ll bring the nails, if you bring the popcorn! Oh, and beer.

  39. 2karmanot says:

    Not to mention: BENGHAZI!!!!!!! AND the E-mails!!!!!!!!

  40. 2karmanot says:


  41. 2karmanot says:

    Head Lice Diva has spoken and blown the dog whistle with her few remaining teeth from the front porch of her double-wide. Need we say more.

  42. 2karmanot says:

    Give it up honey. Drink your latte and munch your croissant in the privacy of your Malibu and leave we prols the F’ alone. PS. San Francisco 49’er

  43. JaneE says:

    Actually, the first amendment means that Christians cannot use the government to force other people to follow their religion. Which is exactly what Kim Davis was doing.

  44. FLL says:

    When the commenter’s hairdo occupies an area that exceeds a certain number of cubic inches, you must cede the argument. Clearly, Jon, you understand this principle. However, in the near future, you may not need to pay any mind to this principle. The times are changing.

  45. Maize says:

    People went to jail after Dred Scott too.

  46. or do you tell him not to waste it and you down it?

  47. do you let your dog come inside you when he’s close?

  48. LADY MABELINE says:

    Per capita, honey.

  49. Mike_in_the_Tundra says:

    Explain Minnesota. It’s smack in the middle of the country. One of the three most liberal Congressional Representatives, Keith Ellison, is from Minnesota. BTW – he’s also Muslim. Senator Franken is one of the more liberal senators. When a constitutional amendment to limit marriage to one man and one woman was on the ballot, the electorate voted it down. They did the same thing with an amendment concerning voter I.D.

    My username is now a misnomer. I no longer live in Minnesota. I live in a suburb of Los Angeles. There are many members of California’s electorate that I would not call bright and wealthy. There may be no farms in Malibu, but there are many farms in California. Are there a certain number of yards that one must live from the ocean before voters become dumb and poor?

  50. MoonDragon says:

    Ted, let Nikki Haley girlsplain that because the laws don’t mention Christians specifically, they can’t be anti-Christian. You people really need to get on the same page, and it’s not the one either of you is reading.

  51. LADY MABELINE says:

    Look at how how regions vote. Those near oceans are brighter and have more money. There are no farms in Malibu.

  52. bpollen says:

    Intelligence is geographically based? I find that implausible.

  53. LADY MABELINE says:

    Iowa smart. Not California smart.

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  55. Mike_in_the_Tundra says:

    LOL! It’s too bad you’re straight, because right now I’m in love with you.

  56. bpollen says:

    I think he’s actually a smart man, but he thinks everybody ELSE is brain dead.

  57. LADY MABELINE says:

    This guy went to Harvard? I’m begining to think Harvard is overrated. He sounds like one of Eastman’s students at Chapman Law.

  58. Jon Green says:

    Pack it up, guys. We can all go home. Tricia wins.

  59. “with brazen ignorance of 8th grade civics”

    To be fair, it’s not like he was born in America.

  60. mark_in_toronto says:

    And here I thought George Bush was as dumb as you could get.
    I was wrong about that, but right about leaving the USA, and just in time. Now, it’s just an evening’s entertainment with 11 months still to go.
    Sorry. (Canadian cliche)

  61. nicho says:


  62. Tricia Harris says:

    Of course Ted Cruz knows this you moron! What he’s saying is that this kind of BS would only happen under a tyrannical TRAITOR OBAMA! And BeccaM, you are an idiot!

  63. BeccaM says:

    Cruz doesn’t care because he’s not bloviating out of his ass at Americans who care about things like facts, critical thinking, or even a passing knowledge of how the American system of government is supposed to work.

    He’s speaking the language of the sub-average Moron Americans. The ones who, if they graduated high school at all, either squeaked by with C-minuses or just promptly forgot every last civics class lesson.

    I do find it disturbing how very many major Republican figures have officially staked out the position that it’s okay to violate the law if you think the Angry Sky Tyrant wants you to — and furthermore that such individuals should never have to suffer consequences for it.

    However, we also know they reserve the right to defy the law only to white Christian conservatives, even when that defiance violates the civil rights of others.

  64. markpkessinger says:

    Blaming the Obama administration — for a ruling issued by a Bush appointee to the federal bench!

  65. Isn’t it just so easy to take a stand from the comfort of your own home…

  66. Baal says:

    If I personally had the superpowers these frightened Republicans ascribe to Obama (other than his simultaneous fecklessness), I would be seriously tempted to outlaw Christianity. Might be hard to find enough lions these days. But I am sure there could be a logistical fix somewhere.

  67. Naja pallida says:

    If you haven’t already been asking those questions long before now, you haven’t been paying attention. :)

  68. Naja pallida says:

    In fairness, Ted Cruz has never actually done his job in the Senate. His primary claim to fame is that he made it so almost nobody in the federal government had to do their job. His entire platform has been to make it so as few people as possible get to have jobs. So he doesn’t really understand the concept that people are supposed to actually do the job they are hired to do.

  69. Tom says:

    Cruz;s support of this blatant corruption and criminality raises serious questions about his past, present, and future actions.

  70. emjayay says:

    Cruz was raised in batshit Dominionist wacko American-Cuban religion. Maybe he actually believes some version of extreme fundamentalist Christianity, cracker style. But he is a champion debater and Harvard Law guy. In debates and the courtroom it’s the same thing: any rhetorical bullshit is OK. It’s not about facts or morality or anything else other than winning.

    In this case he knows his argument is complete rubbish, but all that matters is if it works on the base.

  71. emjayay says:

    Even Yahoo News comments are about 8 to 1.

  72. Steven says:

    I think Cruz and Huckabee and Rand Paul are going to regret hitching their wagons to this woman’s campaign. Check out any comments section anywhere on the web; they’re at least 8-1 against Davis. This is not a complex case, and people understand it: you don’t get to pick and choose which laws and follow, and that especially holds true for government employees. I can’t help but think of similarities to Terri Schiavo, back in the ‘aughts in FL. Remember her? The truly brain-dead woman whom the Republicans moved heaven and earth to keep alive? How profoundly they misread the public perception on that one. They’re doing the same here.

    And let’s make sure everyone has the facts straight: she’s not in jail because she’s following her Christian scruples. She’s in jail because she essentially gave the middle finger to the entire federal judiciary, all the way up to the Supremes. People understand that, too. You don’t just ignore court orders, especially when they’re directed specifically at YOU.

    And in other news: I finally figured out why Ted Cruz always looks so profoundly creepy. It looks like he has false teeth but doesn’t wear them. That’s where that sunken-mouth, drawn-lip puss comes from. It’s horrible.

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