Conservative activists compared Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) to Jesus Christ during an event Friday, earning a chorus of amens from the audience of Iowa Republicans.
Steve Scheffler, a conservative Christian activist, thanked God for the freshman Texas senator who helped engineer the 16-day government shutdown in his effort to derail the Affordable Care Act.
He also prayed for more conservative leaders like Cruz who were willing to “be crucified for their belief system,” reported BuzzFeed.
The Republican establishment, including Sens. John McCain, Lindsey Graham and Orrin Hatch, have criticized Cruz for his legislative efforts to defund or delay Obamacare, but tea party activists applaud his stance.
“Every time one of these guys attacks him, it’s good for him,” said one Iowa Republican operative. “He’s like a superhero. The more bullets that get shot at him, the bigger and stronger he gets.”
Cruz and other conservatives at the annual Reagan fundraising dinner cast themselves as victims and compared themselves to David fighting an army of Goliaths that included the mainstream media and the Obama administration.
The Republican senator said “this is not a typical moment in the political process” because Obama was “intent on violating every constitutional protection.”
“For everyone who talks about wanting to win elections in 2014 — particularly an off-year, nonpresidential year — nothing, nothing, nothing, nothing matters more than an energized and active and vocal grassroots America,” Cruz said.
He said Republicans had lost elections in 2006, 2008 and 2012 because they weren’t conservative enough.
“I gotta say, if you took every Washington strategist and dumped them in the ocean, you know you’d call it? A good start,” he said.