U.S. Representative Peter King, a New York Republican, is not a subtle man. So when he announced that he would boycott a GOP fund-raising dinner because Senator Ted Cruz will be attending, it's not surprising he talked to BuzzFeed about it. "I don't think we should be acknowledging people who are voting against us in our hour of need," he explained. The dinner in question is for NYGOP, and the invitations note that Cruz is a "featured guest" who "is not asking for funds or donations."
King's beef with Cruz goes back to last fall, when Cruz and other Republicans tried to defeat a Hurricane Sandy relief bill. In a press release, Cruz wrote, "Emergency relief for the families who are suffering from this natural disaster should not be used as a Christmas tree for billions in unrelated spending," which apparently means that the federal government shouldn't give suffering families emergency relief.
You'd think that Cruz and King would be able to talk out their differences since they share common ground on so many issues. They're both fans of grand, over-the-top gestures. Back in 2011 King announced that he would be having a series of McCarthy-esque hearings to investigate the patriotism of American Muslims. Cruz also cried "Islam" during last July's Republican primary when he talked about his belief that Sharia law in the U.S. is an "enormous problem." And Cruz made his own homage to McCarthy when he claimed that Harvard's law school was secretly filled with Communists.
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They've also both made a big fan of Chris Matthews. On his MSNBC show Matthews called King's hearings "appalling." He was a little more elaborate in his description of Cruz, calling him "the unsmiling contemptuous face of the wild, nasty hard right fringe" of the Republican Party.
They're even both unafraid to call out other Republicans. In King's case, it's towards politicians like Cruz who voted against the Hurricane Sandy relief. Since then King has been on the offensive when those same Republicans try to fund-raise in New York. He laid into Senator Marco Rubio in April for the same reason. "I made it clear any of those people who voted and postured against money coming to New York and New Jersey and comes up here and wants to take money out of our pockets -- forget it, stay home," King said on MSNBC's Morning Joe.
He recently said Senator James Inhofe was guilty of "absolute hypocrisy" after the senator said there was a difference between tornado damage and hurricane damage (hats off to King, that one's pretty legit). While in Cruz's case he just straight up doesn't trust Republicans, as he recently told Senator John McCain.
If King and Cruz were ever to reconcile this might be the trick to it. Sit them down with cups of cocoa and just let them bond over how frustrated they are with fellow GOPers. The two of them could dish all night.