Ted Cruz, fighter pilot

There's a truism amongst fighter pilots: you can't fake it at 500 knots and enemy fire all around.  One's real character emerges.

That's what's happening as the presidential race has begun.  Real results – not polls – are now being felt, and Donald Trump, who beat his chest as the inevitable victor in the polls, is revealing his true character – as is Ted Cruz, who surprisingly bested him in the first live battle, the Iowa caucuses.

As the caucuses commenced, Cruz was accused of maliciously reporting that candidate Ben Carson was dropping out of the race.  That would help Cruz, it was theorized, since Carson voters presumably might go to Cruz.

What actually happened, it turns out, is that Carson revealed he was going home after Iowa and not on to New Hampshire, where the next vote will be held and where most expected him to go.  CNN reported this with hints that it was strange.  Why wouldn't he be going to New Hampshire?  Was he dropping out?

Unnamed (so far) elements of Cruz's campaign then, as the caucuses were being conducted and votes being tallied, tweeted basically the same.  When Carson, after the election, found this out, he cried foul.  Cruz, who all evidence so far indicates had no personal knowledge of his campaign's tactic, nevertheless immediately apologized.  Carson eventually blamed CNN, although he was not happy with anyone involved.  Details of the matter are still to be revealed.

But Trump, a smart man and certainly aware of these basics – and after a gracious acknowledgement of Cruz's victory – the next day reversed and charged that Cruz had lied to get votes.  He is now demanding a new Iowa election.

Trump has been rude and blustery but not, at least in public during this race, a sore loser.  Of course, he has not lost until now.  But with the battle joined, voters get a chance to see what his true instincts are: throw fairness and honesty out.  It's not becoming, especially when the true facts become obvious.

Rubio is taking advantage of the situation.  "To me, it's an indication of a campaign that's willing to say or do anything in order to win," he told Sean Hannity.  "It's troubling and unfortunate.  I think Ben [Carson] deserves more than that."

Than what?  Cruz apologized and quickly took responsibility, unlike Obama or Hillary, who never takes responsibility for anything controversial.

There's more to be learned about all this but at best, it's minor.  Carson was projected to get roughly 10 percent of the vote, and got 9.  Even if the Cruz campaign's repeat of the CNN report was intentional, it clearly didn't hurt him much, if at all.  An Iowa caucus voter called in to the Mark Levin show Wednesday and said his caucus did not hear of Carson's departure until the next day, and consequently it had no effect on their vote.

Cruz says two things constantly at his rallies: I'll tell you the truth, and I'll do what I say.  It appears he did both this time, even though it hurt him – just as his stance against ethanol subsidies might have hurt him in Iowa.  But it didn't.  This probably won't, either.

Stay tuned for New Hampshire. Up in the air, in the midst of battle, true character is revealed.

There's a truism amongst fighter pilots: you can't fake it at 500 knots and enemy fire all around.  One's real character emerges.

That's what's happening as the presidential race has begun.  Real results – not polls – are now being felt, and Donald Trump, who beat his chest as the inevitable victor in the polls, is revealing his true character – as is Ted Cruz, who surprisingly bested him in the first live battle, the Iowa caucuses.

As the caucuses commenced, Cruz was accused of maliciously reporting that candidate Ben Carson was dropping out of the race.  That would help Cruz, it was theorized, since Carson voters presumably might go to Cruz.

What actually happened, it turns out, is that Carson revealed he was going home after Iowa and not on to New Hampshire, where the next vote will be held and where most expected him to go.  CNN reported this with hints that it was strange.  Why wouldn't he be going to New Hampshire?  Was he dropping out?

Unnamed (so far) elements of Cruz's campaign then, as the caucuses were being conducted and votes being tallied, tweeted basically the same.  When Carson, after the election, found this out, he cried foul.  Cruz, who all evidence so far indicates had no personal knowledge of his campaign's tactic, nevertheless immediately apologized.  Carson eventually blamed CNN, although he was not happy with anyone involved.  Details of the matter are still to be revealed.

But Trump, a smart man and certainly aware of these basics – and after a gracious acknowledgement of Cruz's victory – the next day reversed and charged that Cruz had lied to get votes.  He is now demanding a new Iowa election.

Trump has been rude and blustery but not, at least in public during this race, a sore loser.  Of course, he has not lost until now.  But with the battle joined, voters get a chance to see what his true instincts are: throw fairness and honesty out.  It's not becoming, especially when the true facts become obvious.

Rubio is taking advantage of the situation.  "To me, it's an indication of a campaign that's willing to say or do anything in order to win," he told Sean Hannity.  "It's troubling and unfortunate.  I think Ben [Carson] deserves more than that."

Than what?  Cruz apologized and quickly took responsibility, unlike Obama or Hillary, who never takes responsibility for anything controversial.

There's more to be learned about all this but at best, it's minor.  Carson was projected to get roughly 10 percent of the vote, and got 9.  Even if the Cruz campaign's repeat of the CNN report was intentional, it clearly didn't hurt him much, if at all.  An Iowa caucus voter called in to the Mark Levin show Wednesday and said his caucus did not hear of Carson's departure until the next day, and consequently it had no effect on their vote.

Cruz says two things constantly at his rallies: I'll tell you the truth, and I'll do what I say.  It appears he did both this time, even though it hurt him – just as his stance against ethanol subsidies might have hurt him in Iowa.  But it didn't.  This probably won't, either.

Stay tuned for New Hampshire. Up in the air, in the midst of battle, true character is revealed.