As he prepares for the release of his new book, hilariously titled, Al Franken: Giant of the Senate, Al Franken teased that one of his least favorite colleagues, Ted Cruz (R-TX), would be prominently featured in it.
One of the lines in Franken’s book reads:
“You have to understand that I like Ted Cruz probably more than my colleagues like Ted Cruz, and I hate Ted Cruz.”
Franken, a former comedian and writer for Saturday Night Live, dedicates an entire chapter of his book to the Texas senator. The chapter, titled “Sophistry,” slams Cruz as “singularly dishonest” and “exceptionally smarmy.”
While Senate protocol dictates that senators not publicly discuss private conversations they’ve had with other senators, Franken feels justified in that Cruz has already “[broken] that protocol.” In 2015, Cruz called Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) a “liar” on the floor of the Senate when referring to a private conversation between them.
“He is the exception to the rule in the book, which is there’s protocol in the Senate of not writing about a conversation you’ve had with someone and reporting it where it would make them look bad, but because Ted broke that protocol and called Mitch McConnell a liar on the floor, I felt like, ‘Well, okay!.’”
With his actions, Cruz has already decided that the rules and protocols of the Senate do not apply to him; should he then decide to attack Franken would not only be hypocritical but unfounded. Cruz has made a name for himself as the “least liked member of Congress.” His career is rooted in disturbance; characterizations like Franken’s are simply the fruits of his labor.
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Brian Tyler Cohen is a political writer, actor, and comedy sketch director. He graduated from Lehigh University with a dual degree in English and Business. He currently lives in Los Angeles.