- The Washington Times - Monday, December 29, 2014

A certain Texas Republican still has plenty of fans. Sen. Ted Cruz has won the Federalist Today Presidential Straw Poll with 26 percent of the nearly one thousand votes cast. The field included 16 potential candidates. “Placing a respectable second and third, Senator Rand Paul (22 percent) and Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (16 percent) showed that they also have considerable support among the ‘lovers of freedom and anxious for the fray’ Federalist faithful,” report David Corbin and Matt Parks, two analysts for The Federalist - a learned and vibrant online journal.

“The political insider would, undoubtedly, not be impressed. Good luck getting Senators Cruz or Paul elected President of the United States. Any such insurgent’s campaign will be undone by a press that favors Democrats, a bare-knuckles Republican establishment that favors milque-toast candidates, and a bewildered flyover electorate conditioned to favor one flavor-of-the-month insurgent presidential candidate after another, to the detriment of any effective insurgent candidacy,” say Mssrs. Corbin and Parks.

“These same insiders would have no problem envisioning a scenario in which insurgent Democrat Elizabeth Warren, establishment Democrat Hillary Clinton, or establishment Republicans Jeb Bush, Mitt Romney, or Chris Christie win the presidency. Ruling-class smugness aside, these folks have a point: playing by the normal rules, the least likely outcome in 2016 is a victory by a Republican insurgent, even though 40 percent of Americans consistently identify themselves as conservatives (twice the typical number of progressives) But who says we have to play by their rules?” the pair ask.

They have much to say. See the complete essay here. The poll was released Monday; find the results here. “One scenario is clear: we’ll either hang together in 2015 - or be hung out to dry, once again, in 2016,” the two analysts add.

• Jennifer Harper can be reached at jharper@washingtontimes.com.

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