By Greg Richter
Ted Cruz, the tea party Republican from Texas, may be exactly what frustrated conservatives are looking for in a presidential candidate, James Carville said Monday on the "Hannity" Fox News show.
Cruz is talented, "whip smart," "as educated a guy as you can be," and very good on his feet, the Democratic strategist said.
If he were a conservative "watching Michele Bachmann or Herman Cain is actually painful," he said. "Ted Cruz to a lot of people says what they're thinking in a very articulate way. He has great command of the language."
Carville said he's heard from many Republicans who tell him they're tired of going along with "establishment" presidential candidates who lose in the general election.
"We went with Bob Dole, we went with John McCain, we went with Mitt Romney," he quoted them as saying. "We went down this road, and everybody said this is the pragmatic thing to do, and it led us to defeat. Why don't we try to get somebody like a Ted Cruz?"
Cruz is undoubtedly skilled enough that he'll do very well in the primaries, Carville predicted.
"Whether he's going to be the nominee or not, I doubt that," he added. "But I think he's going to cause a lot of angst, and I think he's very good on his feet. If I were a conservative, if I were Sean Hannity, if I was Rush Limbaugh, I would like him because he makes the case that I want somebody to make to the American people."
Still, he said, Republicans will have to battle it out whether they want to stick with the pragmatism of a McCain or the idealism of a Cruz.
"That's a conflict that Republicans have got to flush out in 2016," he said.
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