Washington (CNN) - A year ago, he had never held elected office. Today, he is one of the country's top potential presidential candidates for 2016.
Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, won the Values Voter Summit straw poll Saturday with a commanding 42% of the vote. Dr. Ben Carson, a renowned neurosurgeon and Fox News contributor, finished in second place, one vote ahead of former Sen. Rick Santorum, R-Pennsylvania, a 2012 GOP presidential candidate. They effectively tied, with 13% of the vote each.
Republican Sens. Rand Paul of Kentucky and Marco Rubio of Florida rounded out the top five at 6% and 5%, respectively. GOP Rep. Paul Ryan, the former vice presidential candidate from Wisconsin, finished just behind them.
Carson won the vice presidential straw poll, with 21%, four points ahead of Cruz's second place. Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minnesota, placed third with 9%, and Paul and Rubio again rounded out the top five at 8% and 7%, respectively.
But the real story is Cruz, a freshman senator who has enjoyed a meteoritic rise to the top of the Republican Party's right wing. His first-place finish captured the highest percentage of votes since the straw poll began in 2007.
“The Values Voter straw poll reveals what conservative, Republican-leaning voters are looking for in a potential candidate," Family Research Council Action President Tony Perkins said in a statement. The Family Research Council sponsors the conference. "Values voters are looking for those who will refuse to be bound by the ‘can’t mentality’ of the establishment and will challenge the status quo."
The Values Voter Summit, a political conference for social conservative activists and organizations, held its eighth annual conference in Washington. More than 2,200 people participated this year - although the whole event generates an even greater buzz on social media and in conservative circles across the country.
"Values voters!" what a sick joke. i have news for these hypocrites. hate is not a value! trying to force others to live by your beliefs isn't a 'value!' persecuting women isn't a 'value.' they need to start valuing real freedom, not the kind that just means 'you have the freedom to do whatever i approve of.' they are truly the American Taliban!
Fabulous! Congratulations, Cruz! This is the best news I've heard in a long time. I truly want to see Cruz run for President in 2016. If he is the Tea Party (there isn't much of a Republican party left) candidate, the rest of the country can look forward to the presidency of Hillary Clinton and the continuation of President Obama's agenda for the good of the middle class of the United States.
Like anybody with half a brain really cares or has any respect for the sheep le that attended the value(less) voters summit.
Come on, these are the same folks that think Michele Bachman and Sara Palin have any kind of intelligence.
This is why the republicans can't win elections.They listen to a relatively small bunch right wing activists that don't represent the whole country.Even when a moderate like Romney is selected they screw up by matching their mainstream candidate with a tea party conservative that only 25% of country wants to win.Right know that 25% is running their party which is sad because I allows thought they were a good check to liberalism but now their just being destructive.
wasn't Bachman a "values voter" once in Iowa, and won the straw poll in Iowa ?
wow – I guess as long as the "fringe" has control, we're going to have another democrat in office, in 2016.
To be perfectly honest, I would Love to Vote for a republican, but I honestly don't see one that is at least a little bit on the moderate side. Too bad. Because for us Independents, who ever wins, they will need the Independents, period.
Really? Cruz won the poll. And this guy came in second. Dr. Ben Carson a black man who stated "Obamacare is the worst thing since slavery. What a pair!
Wow,The Cruz missile sure has reversed itself and struck the GOP. The GOP/TEA death wish in all it's glory is coming true. Why would a venerable political party commit suicide? What next? Bachmann for VP. These people are stuck in a whirlpool that is sucking them down into a deep cesspoll By now the GOP/TEA poll must be at 18% and dropping
Talk about unqualified. A year ago he had never held office.
That statement says it all. What hypocrites the GOP are. President Obama had been a Senator for years before he became POTUS, yet they still say he's unqualified. And don't get me started on the fact that Ted wasn't even born in the United States!
He joins an illustrious group of losers.
A veritable "Who's Who" of crazy right wing nut jobs. Cruz/Bachmann 2016.
God save us from the Tea Party Republicans.
So these birthers don't realize that this Canadian terrorist WAS born in Canada? Icarus anyone? That meteoritic rise of a teatard means nothing in a general election.
This cretin has caused more trouble in one year than al Qaeda. If they think that fed workers on a "paid vacation" and the millions effected by said vacation are going to forget who was responsible good luck and I hope you run out of air in that repug bubble.
cowards yes you
What a joke. Values? Where in hell do any of you believe it's values to deprive the masses, while engorging your petty wants to the ceiling. The country is in one hell of a mess, and the right wing threw it there. Accept this fact, and move on to somewhere better.
Sad for a party who thinks He who speaks the most lies and pure hatred is what qualify's as their party's leader.
Maybe those polls that show Teddy as the most hated politician where taken without calling the couple hundred loonies in that room. Sorry Teddy, 80% of Americans already know, you will never be president of this country.
Hmmm.. those darn racist teabaggers.. how dare they put a blackman second.. below the hispanic.... thats totally racist... i bet they are just doing this to try and cover up the fact that the teaparty and all republicans are racists... this is dog whistle stuff.. im sure of it... chris mathews tells me so..
In this country I support everyone's right to hate Obamacare or even to hate President Obama.
What is inexcusable is that any American could hate enough to damage our country. To hate enough to do this borders on insanity or in the case of some politicians that damage America for their own politican gain it is nothing short of treason.
So let's see... the "values" these folks hold dear include supporting a Canadian-born person, who by his own admission is only now renouncing his Canadian citizenship and becoming a naturalized American. By that fact, Cruz isn't eligible to be POTUS. But that won't stop the GOP – because he's got an Hispanic last name.
These folks also hold dear someone who thinks that extortion is the way to run a democratically-elected government. Someone who thinks that defaulting on our nation's debt is not a bad thing. Someone who thinks that if he doesn't like a law, it shouldn't be implemented, even though it has been passed and upheld not only by the Supreme Court, but by the nationwide referendum we call the 2012 Presidential Election.
This just once more shows how evangelicals use their supposed faith as an excuse for all their bad behavior.
This years Values Voter Summit , 2,200 people participated this year. All of whom are religious right wing tea party voters.
Here are the past results of the 2011 Values Voter Summit straw poll .
Ron Paul – 37 percent
Herman Cain – 23 percent
Rick Santorum – 16 percent
Rick Perry – 8 percent
Michele Bachmann – 8 percent
Mitt Romney – 4 percent
Newt Gingrich – 3 percent
Jon Huntsman – 0 percent
Undecided – 1 percent
Here were the top four vice presidential choices: Michele Bachmann; Herman Cain; Marco Rubio; and Rick Santorum.
All you have to do is Mention the names Ted Cruz and Michele Bachmann in the same sentence and you have a winning presidential ticket for less then 0.7% of all Americans .
I was wanting to see the return of Mike Huckabee and Chuck Norris !
Some people(Tea Party) have not a clue .Can not wait till 2014 to rid ourselves of them.
What democratic dream ticket Cruz/Bachmann would be, one could only hope :)
Cruz is Obama with an intellect.
Great news. The Republicans are on a path to complete self-destruction.
Please just go away Cruz.
So much for the racist teaparty... !
Who cares who the tea trash picks for a canadates, their going to get slaughtered in their next election by record numbers by ALL the American voters. The GOP teabums=the garbage of America !!!