It's hard to figure out what went through the mind of Sen. Ted Cruz — or more likely his handlers — when they authorized new merchandise depicting him with a mullet and the slogan "McConnell in the front, MAGA in the back."
We get that someone in the orbit of Texas' junior senator gleaned that youngsters find mullets hip in an ironic sense, then figured they'd parlay that into quick campaign cash and a few youth votes via some overpriced goodies. (Just $30 for a tank top, kids!)
We get that, even with a mullet, the cartoon version of Cruz used on the shirt is considerably more marketable than a photo of the real thing. For example, the cartoon Cruz's face isn't frozen in a perpetual smirk and it has a fucking chin.
And we also get that the big "Spring Break 2021" stamped on the gear is part of Cruz's effort to rebrand the trip he took to balmy Cancun while his constituents literally froze during February's winter storm as a "whoopsie!" moment. (Although, try selling that joke to the families of the 111 Texans who died during the freeze, Ted.)
On all three counts, we're not saying the design was a good idea, just that we can kind of follow the beyond-cynical, out-of-touch, Washington-insider thought process that went into creating it.
That said, someone please clue us in on what in the living fuck Ted and crew thought they were achieving with the gear's slogan, which plays off of the ol' "business in the front, party in the back" joke about Kentucky waterfalls/ape drapes/Camaro crash helmets/Mississippi mudflaps/insert your derisive term for "mullets" here.
Let's put this in context: despite saying he'd support Donald Trump if he's the 2024 GOP presidential nominee, former senate majority leader — boy, does it feel great to type those four words together — Mitch McConnell ain't exactly on the MAGA train. You might recall he wasn't a big fan of Trump's drooling MAGA goons wrecking his place of business.
Meanwhile, Cruz has spent the past four years figuring out new and interesting ways to sphincter snorkel the reality show president in a bid to have Trump's red-hatted faithful support his own potential presidential run. Even after the Capitol insurrection, which should have been a pretty sobering moment, Cruz voted against recognizing Joe Biden's legitimate presidential win.
More than anything, Cruz's brave new world of mullet merchandising suggests he and his collection of bottom feeders are so goddamned stupid they can't tell that their new slogan is essentially marketing their own product as Silly Putty.
In other words, it's an out-and-out admission Cruz is so unctuous, so utterly cynical, so completely lacking in spine that he's trying to be both part of stodgy Republican establishment and an honorary member of the Trump's Capitol-wrecking thugs. Not exactly a decisive marketing win.
We can only hope Texas voters are finally figuring out that Cruz's schtick is as played out and ridicule-worthy as the haircut he's chosen to symbolize it.
Stay on top of San Antonio news and views. Sign up for our Weekly Headlines Newsletter.
Support Local Journalism.
Join the San Antonio Current Press Club
Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.
Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.
Join the San Antonio Press Club for as little as $5 a month.