During an extravagant GOP gala in New York City last night, many Republicans decided to ignore Cruz as he gave his stump speech about “jobs, freedom, and security” for the millionth time during his campaign—and many are blaming his “New York values” comment from back in January.
The 800 or so people in the room seemed to warmly welcome (or just basic attention) to front-runner Donald Trump and the sad underdog John Kasich, both of whom went on to give their speeches before Cruz.
The scene as Cruz speaks at NYC GOP Gala pic.twitter.com/Pwx8I0Ci25— Vaughn Hillyard (@VaughnHillyard) April 15, 2016
BuzzFeed News reports that, “like most stump speeches, this one includes applause lines sprinkled throughout — but the audience barely applauded, and sometimes not at all.” In addition, the crowd “grew increasingly loud, with many people talking amongst themselves, milling about, and eating and drinking, their cutlery making audible sounds as Cruz soldiered on through his speech.”
Those in attendance reportedly got up to mingle with friends, took selfies, and some even casually made their way to the exit once Cruz began to speak.
Is it really about the “New York values” comment? One attendee thinks so.
"I mean, [Cruz] blew it when he did the New York Values thing — that was a bad point," Ron Shindel, a Republican in attendance who also serves as the New York Police Department's commanding officer of the World Trade Center, told NBC News. "But this is Trumpville — this is Trump town. I imagined the overwhelming support of Trump."
Another attendee, however, blamed the timing of his speech, saying, "Everyone had had like six glasses of wine, and it was late and people hadn't eaten."
To get an idea of how hard it is to hear Cruz at this NY GOP dinner pic.twitter.com/0r7XckAXmB— Betsy Klein (@betsy_klein) April 15, 2016
Cruz has worked hard to clarity his now-famous phrase “New York values,” during his campaign trail across the state. He has previously said that he meant to blast the “liberal New York politicians whom, he says, were funded by Trump.”
"What that means is the policies of liberal democratic politicians have been hurting the people of New York for a long, long time," Cruz said in Brooklyn last week. And he told NBC's Chuck Todd on Thursday, "New Yorkers understood what it meant."
It may all be too little, too late. Although he was the last to speak (and that may have something to do with the crowd’s attention span), it seems unlikely that these New Yorkers would have much patience for a petty comment about their values.
Thumbnail/Banner Credits: REUTERS/Charles Mostoller