How Trump loyalist Ted Cruz managed to annoy all of Pittsburgh | Analysis

January 21, 2021 11:15 am

U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas (Official portrait)

By Ryan Deto

Right after President Joe Biden was inaugurated, he started to rescind a lot of former President Donald Trump’s executives orders. One of those was moving the U.S. back into the Paris Climate Agreement, an international collaboration to reduce global carbon emissions.

That decision probably upset a lot of conservatives, chief among them Trump himself, even though Trump hasn’t actually commented on this, and since his Twitter is suspended forever, he likely won’t be able to, at least not on social media.

Lucky for Trump, his biggest simp, U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas,  came to his aid with a pathetic attempt to recapture some Trumpism the day Trump left office.

“By rejoining the Paris Climate Agreement, President Biden indicates he’s more interested in the views of the citizens of Paris than in the jobs of the citizens of Pittsburgh,” Cruz tweeted. “This agreement will do little to affect the climate and will harm the livelihoods of Americans.”

Not only did Cruz literally copy, practically word for word, Trump’s line when he announced pulling out of the Paris Accords, Cruz also repeated tired and false cliches about Pittsburgh in his statement.

For example, he claimed, without evidence, that rejoining the agreement would destroy thousands of manufacturing jobs. Not only have manufacturing jobs been declining in the Pittsburgh region for decades before the U.S. joined the agreement in 2016, even after Trump pulled out, the region continued to lose thousands of manufacturing jobs.

But even ignoring all that, Cruz’s tweet was really just annoying on all fronts.

  1. It rekindled a super dumb fight we already had when Trump first said this “Pittsburgh, not Paris” line, forcing all of us Pittsburghers to again tell some out-of-touch politician they don’t know anything about Pittsburgh. And Pittsburgh officials promised to adhere to the climate goals of the agreement, anyway.
  2. It created another example of a Senator representing another state pretending that he cares about constituents he doesn’t represent. U.S. Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) claimed he just cared about Pennsylvanians when challenging the results of the Pennsylvania election. Both Hawley and Cruz tried to disenfranchise millions of Pennsylvanians who voted by mail in 2020. So, spare us any crocodile tears that Cruz cares about “citizens of Pittsburgh” when just a week ago he was OK with taking away many of their votes.
  3. Cruz’s tweet led to many on social media reposting Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto’s viral tweet response to Trump that every Pittsburgher has seen at least a dozen times already. Peduto is running for re-election, so he can take any chance for free pub he can get, but Pittsburghers don’t need to see the tweet anymore. We know! (Peduto has had the tweet pinned to the top of his page for years and removed it yesterday after Biden rejoined the Agreement.)

As now Lt. Gov. John Fetterman pointed out in 2017, Trump’s “Pittsburgh, not Paris” line was likely just a signal to a conservative base in rural Pennsylvania. That base loves Trump, and arguably still does. But what is sad about Cruz’s copycat ploy is that Pennsylvania conservatives don’t like him nearly as much.

In the 2016 GOP primary in Pennsylvania, Trump beat Cruz by more than 550,000 votes. Cruz did even worse when only looking at results from Pittsburgh-area counties.

Trump insulted Cruz’s wife during that election, and yet Cruz willingly came to Trump’s aid shortly after, anyway. And now, even after Trump lost in 2020, Cruz is still simping hard and annoying everyone in the process.

Ryan Deto is a reporter for Pittsburgh City Paper, where this story first appeared. 

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