Cruz's predictable trajectory

What would the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) be without some sparks? But Cruz vs. McCain again? Snore. So Sen. Ted CruzTed CruzTrump haunts McCain's reelection fight The Trail 2016: On the fringe FULL SPEECH: Hillary Clinton links Trump to 'alt-right' in Reno MORE (R-Texas) has been on some reform streak, trying not to pick fights with his Senate colleagues—right? Wrong. First he made Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnellMitch McConnellClinton, Trump sharpen attacks Sanders, Merkley back McConnell decision to skip TPP vote John McCain: No longer a profile in courage MORE (R-Ky.) and Sen. John CornynJohn CornynThe Hill's 12:30 Report Top Republican questions Lynch on Clinton Foundation probe Baby dies of Zika in Texas MORE (R-Texas) walk the plank and vote with Democrats on a procedural vote to increase the debt ceiling — in order for it to pass — and now he is inferring that previous GOP presidential nominees former Gov. Mitt Romney (Mass.), Sen. John McCainJohn McCainTrump haunts McCain's reelection fight Primary opponent: McCain has 'issues about race' Clinton, Trump sharpen attacks MORE (Ariz.) and former Sen. Bob Dole (Kan.) don't stand on principle.

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Doing his no-notes, preacher-style speech Thursday at CPAC, Cruz wooed the crowd with more torpedo-ObamaCare refrains and then returned to his criticism of sell-out Republicans in Washington. Cruz noted that "President McCain and President Romney" are good, decent men but said "when you don't stand and draw a clear distinction, when you don't stand for principle, Democrats celebrate."

Of course today McCain said that although he doesn't care what Cruz says about him, he expects Cruz to apologize to Dole. "I wonder if he thinks that Bob Dole stood for principle on a hilltop in Italy when he was so gravely wounded," he said.

Someone should tell Cruz that being predictable is boring and that gratuitous swipes are adolescent.

WAS HILLARY'S HITLER/PUTIN COMPARISON OUT OF BOUNDS? WHY? AskAB returns next week. Please send your questions and comments to askab@thehill.com. Thank you.

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