Yesterday, Ted Cruz created a brouhaha by saying Donald Trump's campaign song should be "New York, New York," because "he embodies New York values." Trump, who has never shied from his identity as a New Yorker, took offense, as did a large segment of the (often NYC-based) news media. But what does that mean? Was Ted Cruz praising Donald Trump's business success, energy, and creativity? That seems...unlikely. People didn't have to wait long to see Cruz asked this question, since it came up quickly in Thursday night's GOP debate on Fox Business News. Watch the clip and see if you can figure out what it means:
Well, no one actually said what it means, but apparently everyone in South Carolina knows exactly what it means. Which kind of makes everyone in South Carolina sound like a huge jerk (which they're not, and that's why you shouldn't generalize). Many people think it's just a nastier version of "East Coast elites." New Yorkers probably wouldn't argue that they're the most elite of the East Coast elites. After all, George W. Bush used "Massachusetts" as an effective insult against John Kerry in 2004. Many others, however, remember very similar phrases have a long and nasty history. There is the famous West Wing scene about a "New York sense of humor," although in Cruz's case (and he made the remark in response to a dig from Trump about Cruz being born in Canada) it's likely more about all of the types of folks and the types of beliefs they hold than a specific group.