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By Sarah May on
 January 11, 2024

Ted Cruz: Whether Michelle Obama or Joe Biden serves as Dem nominee 'almost a coin flip'

Not one to shy away from making attention-grabbing political prognostications, Republican Texas Sen. Ted Cruz recently declared that the odds that former first lady Michelle Obama winds up as the Democratic Party nominee for the November election are almost as good as those that President Joe Biden's name will top the ticket, as the Daily Wire reports.

The lawmaker's latest prediction on the state of the race came during an episode of his podcast The Verdict with Ted Cruz, co-hosted with Ben Ferguson, and as the Daily Wire notes, the impetus for Cruz's updated take on potential nomination scenarios were comments made by Mrs. Obama on Jay Shetty's podcast On Purpose, released earlier this week.

The Hill noted that Obama was especially outspoken during the interview with Shetty, particularly on the topic of what she believes is at stake in the 2024 presidential contest.

“I am terrified about what could possibly happen,” Mrs. Obama declared, presumably – but not overtly – referencing a potential victory on the part of the Republican frontrunner, former President Donald Trump.

Explaining that fear, Obama went on to say, “Because our leaders matter. Who we select, who speaks for us, who holds that bully pulpit – it affects us in ways that sometimes I think people take for granted.”

“The fact that people think that government, does it really even do anything? And I'm like, 'Oh my God, does government do everything for us.' And we cannot take this democracy for granted. And sometimes I worry that we do,” Obama continued.

In other seeming references to Trump, Obama told Shetty that when it comes to politicians, “The tone and tenor of the message matters. We can't just say what the first thing that comes to our minds.”

“That is not authenticity to me. That's childish, and we see childish leadership right before us – what that looks like now and how that feels, where somebody is just base, and vulgare and cynical in a leadership position,” Obama said.

Looking back on her time in immediate proximity to great political power and the insight it afforded her, Obama mused, “There's such thing as 'knowing too much,' and when you've been married to the president of the United States who knows everything about everything in the world, sometimes you just want to turn it off.”

These comments and others made during the sit-down with Shetty are what prompted Cruz to suggest that a Michelle Obama candidacy is by no means a longshot concept.

Cruz, in reaction to the podcast, said that the former first lady was, in essence, “pitching her qualifications, like everything she knows, because she was married to Barack Obama when he was president, and still is today that she, like knows everything the president needs to know.”

The Texas senator added that “it does feel a little bit like a pitch of, 'hey guys, I'm here, I'm ready. I can step in, and I'm willing to do it.'”

“And so. I would change as I said, my assessment a couple of months ago was the odds of Michelle being the nominee were 35%. Based on this interview, I would change those odds from 35% to 45%. I still think it is slightly more likely than not that Biden remains the nominee, but I think it's 55/45,” Cruz added. “I think it is almost a coin flip.”

Further, Cruz opined, it is not just Biden who should fear Obama's potential interest in the job, but stated that Republicans need to realize that she “is a dangerous, dangerous, dangerous nominee” because, whether fair or not, “the first lady has a patina of Teflon, she's not perceived as overly partisan, she's not perceived as combative” and noted that a mainstream media-fueled illusion of that sort could potentially carry her to electoral success.

Written By:
Sarah May

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