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City Hallways (April 15) From my Ted Cruz notebook

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Ted Cruz at MSNBC-sponsored town hall-style meeting at UB Thursday. (Sue Schulman/Buffalo News)

They didn't like Reagan at first either, Cruz says

Ted Cruz knows he's not well-liked by his Senate colleagues, but Cruz Thursday seemed at peace with that.  The Washington establishment, Cruz said during the Town Hall event on UB's North Campus, once despised Ronald Reagan, too.

But now,  Cruz said, "you cannot find a Republican who will swear Ronald Reagan is not tattooed on his  body."

Do you have a Reagan tattoo? moderator Chuck Todd asked Cruz.

That's between me and my wife, Heidi, Cruz responded.

***
Cruz  also called the Washington, D.C.  establishment corrupt - like Don Corleone from The Godfather (Cruz has said he liked all three movies.).

"I think a lot  of people in Washington, they came there wanting to do the  right thing,"  Cruz said.

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The crowd at Thursday's Ted Cruz Town-Hall-style meeting at UB.

But Washington, the Texas senator said, "is a corrupting  place . . . The most corrupting thing is wanting to get reelected. People get terrified of not being  in office."

It's like in the Godfather movies, Cruz said of how Washington works: "He makes small incremental decisions, and at the end of the movie, he murders everyone."

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Of course, not all Washington politicians fall into Cruz's corrupt category.

One of those exceptions was Jack Kemp, the nine-term Congressman who represented Buffalo from 1971 to 1989 - when Cruz, born in 1970, was growing up.

"I grew up idolizing Jack Kemp," Cruz said, citing Kemp's economic vision.

Kemp understood, Cruz said,  "the way to lift people out of poverty is to raise them up."

Applause Meter

I was keeping track during the Cruz Town Hall  on my own internal applause meter.

The Cruz line that got the overall biggest applause as well as a standing ovation: "We are going to beat Donald Trump in Cleveland."

The issue comment getting the biggest applause: "I  am campaigning on a simple flat tax, and abolishing the IRS."

Last chance to vote

This is final day of our presidential primary straw poll. Please vote if you haven't already.  You can vote in our Democratic or Republican primary, or both.

I'd truly appreciate if you would include your party affiliation. It's for analysis only.

And please, only one ballot per person.

I'm thinking of tweeting out the results, and posting them on Facebook Sunday, then providing more details  in Monday's blog post.

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Countdown to NY Primary News

Lots of political stories in today's paper:

Here's my story from yesterday's Ted Cruz Town Hall.

Here's piece my colleague Matt Spina did on Cruz's stop at Charlie the Butcher after the Town Hall.

Here's piece my colleague Sandra Tan did on an after-Town Hall event she participated in at the Anchor Bar.

Also piece News Washington Bureau Chief Jerry Zremski did on the Democratic debate last night.

And a piece by News political reporter Bob McCarthy on all-things political going on in New York City yesterday.

Carl Paladino scheduled press conference for this  morning. Press release says Paladino will be criticizing  Kasich for  having supported the 1994 federal assault weapons ban.

 

Calendar Items

Mayor Brown is kicking off  a series of Earth  Day activities with a tree planting this afternoon behind City  Hall.  The press release from the mayor's office says it'll be a Crab Apple tree.

In today's Buffalo News and buffalonews.com, here's a story my colleague Mark Sommer did on yesterday's public hearing on plans to landmark three buildings threatened with demolition.

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