U.S. Senator and presidential candidate Ted Cruz has tweeted out a cartoon of Hillary Clinton holding the New York Times and the Washington Post “lapdogs” on a leash.
Again responding to the controversy over the depictions of the Republican presidential candidate’s young daughters, Carline and Catherine, as trained monkeys with the senator in Santa Claus garb as an organ grinder that appeared in the Washington Post, the Cruz liberal media bias-themed tweet reads “seems like a better idea for a cartoon: Hillary and her lapdogs.” See tweet below.
The original Washington Post cartoon drawn by Ann Telnaes prompted a huge backlash on social media, and even on MSNBC, before it was pulled.
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) December 22, 2015
While acknowledging that children of politicians are off-limits by “unspoken rule,” Telnaes tried to justify it by claiming Cruz’s daughters were “fair game” because they appeared in a recent Christmas parody video with their dad.
Ted Cruz has put his children in a political ad- don't start screaming when editorial cartoonists draw them as well. https://t.co/7hafBacOiK
— Ann Telnaes (@AnnTelnaes) December 22, 2015
In response to the cartoon controversy, however, Washington Post editorial page editor Fred Hiatt didn’t apologize upon taking down the cartoon, but wrote that “It’s generally been the policy of our editorial section to leave children out of it. I failed to look at this cartoon before it was published. I understand why Ann thought an exception to the policy was warranted in this case, but I do not agree.”
That the cartoon would have been approved by lower-level editors was left unaddressed by Hiatt.
— Chuck Ross (@ChuckRossDC) December 23, 2015
Many critics of the Telnaes cartoon observed that Barack Obama’s daughters appeared in political advertising, but insisted that the Post would never dream of caricaturing them.
— Weasel Zippers (@weaselzippers) December 23, 2015
National Review and others recalled that in an instance that made national headlines at the time, a Capitol Hill staffer was run out of town for criticizing the Obama daughters on Facebook about a year ago.
Breitbart News writer John Nolte pointed out that the media didn’t seem to apply the children are off-limits rule to Sarah Palin’s kids, or Mitt Romney’s grandchild, or the offspring of other prominent Republicans.
On MSNBC’s Morning Joe, Willie Gest declared the following about the Cruz daughters cartoon in the Washington Post.
“People look for moments of bias in the media. Here’s one right here. You can’t be selectively offended by cartoons. If that had been a Democrat, or God forbid the President of the United States, they would have lit the house on fire. There would have been wall-to-wall coverage on it. Leave the kids out of it, yes, but this particular depiction of it is what’s disgusting.”
You may recall Cruz jokingly tweeted out the iconic Jennifer Beals “maniac” video sequence from Flashdance after Donald Trump referred to his rival as “a little bit of a maniac,” which preserved the current bromance between the two candidates.
Seems like a better idea for a cartoon: Hillary and her lapdogs. pic.twitter.com/dou9c7fS4U
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) December 23, 2015
In an article for the Federalist called “10 Stupidest Things About The Post’s Cartoon Portraying Cruz’s Children As Monkeys,” Mollie Hemingway wrote, in part, as follows.
“As if going after children weren’t enough, Telnaes thought it would be a grand idea to portray the daughters of the first Hispanic senator from Texas as monkeys. I’m not sure if the dehumanization was done because of that, because of their father’s politics or some other reason, but it compounds the error in ways that make you wonder how in the heck the cartoon received editorial approval from the Washington Post.”
Hemingway also wondered how Telnaes could be so ignorant of the fact that virtually all politicians include family members in their commercials.
Ted Cruz has been fundraising off the Post cartoon controversy, but office seekers on both sides of the ideological spectrum routinely engage in the same thing to fill their campaign coffers, as Hillary Clinton is doing by playing the victim card after the Donald Trump “schlonged” remark.
According to current polling data, Ted Cruz is in first place in Iowa heading into the February 1 caucus in that state, and is in the distant second spot nationally and in other states behind Donald Trump.
[Photo by Mark Zaleski/AP]