Bet on Rafael beating Beto down in Texas
Officially, it's Senator Cruz vs. Representative O'Rourke. In reality, it's a liberal vs. a conservative. In some circles, it's Rafael vs. Beto!
Senator Cruz took the first shot the day after the primary. It started with a humorous radio ad focusing on the Democrat's name:
As Tuesday's primaries were closing, Cruz's campaign released a 60-second radio ad that was a country music jingle prodding O'Rourke for going by "Beto" rather than "Robert."
"Liberal Robert wanted to fit in, so he changed his name to Beto and hid it with a grin," the song says.
O'Rourke said he's gone by "Beto" since he was born.
"My parents have called me Beto from day one, and it's just – it's kind of a nickname for Robert in El Paso. It just stuck," he said in a brief phone interview Tuesday night.
O'Rourke has previously posted a baby picture of himself in a hand-stitched "Beto" sweater on Instagram.
It was a great ad full of humor and disclosing how Senator Cruz will go forward. In other words, he will paint "Beto" as a liberal, and that won't be hard to do at all.
Mr. O'Rourke has a few bigger problems than the radio ad. It started on election night, as Karl Rove wrote:
National Democrats have hyped the telegenic El Paso congressman as a strong bet to upset Ted Cruz, the state's junior senator. Mr. O'Rourke spent $4.2 million to win his primary with 62%.
But he lost 103 of the state's 254 counties to Edward Kimbrough, a retired Postal Service employee, who spent $785 and received 15%, and Sema Hernandez, who spent nothing – zero, zip, nada – and still got 24%. (Ms. Hernandez did have a Facebook page.)
Mr. Cruz received twice as many votes in his primary as Mr. O'Rourke did in his.
Mr. O'Rourke routinely swears in campaign appearances. He might have done so even more vividly in private as returns trickled in.
Beto will have another problem. It's likely that the Democrats will nominate Miss Lupe Valdez, a very liberal Democrat from Dallas who is closely associated with sanctuary cities. In other words, the governor's race will feature the man who signed SB-4, the Texas law against sanctuary cities, versus a woman who openly opposed it.
Put your money on Governor Abbott and Senator Cruz. They will easily get 60% of the vote later this year.
What happens to Beto? Maybe he will show up in a Bobby Kennedy movie sometime in the future.