On Wednesday, Ted Cruz announced he selected Carly Fiorina as his vice presidential pick.
This choice is bizarre for several reasons.
First, Cruz does not have the Republican nomination to actually run for president in the general election this fall. The GOP will make their decision on the nominee at their convention this July, which is likely to get heated.
Not only is Cruz not the nominee, but he is also far from winning. As it currently stands, Donald Trump is way ahead in the race to take the Republican nomination. Mathematically, Cruz really does not have much of a path to victory.
And then there was the announcement itself. Cruz introduced Fiorina as his VP in a 30-minute speech that stretched on and on.
A few minutes after Fiorina finally got up to the podium, she started singing. Yes, singing:
....and then Carly Fiorina started singing https://t.co/gvyVwdhfnv — BuzzFeed News (@BuzzFeedNews) April 27, 2016
The song was one she apparently wrote with Cruz's young daughters while out campaigning. Cruz had referred to their songs in his rambling introduction, where he explained that Fiorina was close with his daughters.
In case the subtext wasn't clear, they were telling you that Fiorina is motherly. So while she is, unavoidably, a woman, she is not a threatening woman. Because a powerful woman who, for all her faults, did manage to rise in a male-dominated business world just doesn't have that likability factor.
Signs at the announcement, as well as a new campaign website, list the "running mates" as "Cruz / Carly."
Which, OK, everyone likes some alliteration. But it also caused some to wonder: Why does Cruz get called by his last name but Fiorina gets called informally by her first?
This gets us to the heart of the ridiculous announcement.
Cruz clearly made this announcement as a way to gain traction in his increasingly failing run for the Republican nomination. He needs something to get people to pay attention, and picking a running mate would do it.
Fiorina has pull, as she was originally also running for the nomination, and has fans and she's obviously smart. But Fiorina is also, again, a woman.
Cruz is trying to position himself as the Republican opposite of Trump. He's trying to show that he's reasonable, level-headed and not a sexist pig like his competitor.
This announcement had me fuming, and I couldn't figure out why. But then it occurred to me that I was having some serious déjà vu.
In August of 2008, Republican presidential nominee John McCain's campaign was beginning to fail. He was dropping against Barack Obama's historic, inspiring campaign and he needed something to perk up his run.
So he picked a woman as his running mate. That woman was Sarah Palin.
Aside from Palin's clear lack of readiness for the campaign, Palin was bad for women.
Palin is against a woman's right to abortion, same-sex marriage and gun control. She supports sex education that teaches abstinence. She said in 2008, she did not support the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, which is about equal pay for women.
Fiorina is more of the same. Remember, the biggest story of her presidential candidacy was that she made wildly inaccurate remarks during a debate about Planned Parenthood which discredited and hurt the organization.
Cruz, meanwhile, is also bad for women. He is against abortion, Planned Parenthood, same-sex marriage and gun control.
But Cruz is trying to convince voters that he is the better option for women against Trump. This is a race to the bottom.
Citations: Los Angeles Times