By some accounts, a many engaging competition this Nov is over a Senate chair in Texas. Manny Fernandez, who covers Texas for The Times, sent us this dispatch from Houston:
The tightest competition in Texas is giving new definition to temperament politics.
Senator Ted Cruz is sealed in a extreme bid for re-election opposite his Democratic rival, Representative Beto O’Rourke.
But it’s not utterly Ted contra Beto. Technically, it’s Rafael contra Robert.
People’s initial names are frequency a thing in politics. This competition is a exception.
The incumbent, Rafael Edward Cruz, a Cuban-American who appeals to white conservatives, disliked a ring of Rafael and Rafaelito as a teen and took on a reduction Hispanic-sounding Ted, a nickname of Edward. The challenger, Robert Francis O’Rourke, an Irish-American who appeals to white liberals, embraced a some-more Hispanic-sounding Beto, a Spanish nickname of Roberto, as a child in El Paso.
That red pointer reading “Beto’s” off Interstate 20 in a Dallas suburb of Grand Prairie? It’s not his new debate office. It’s a renouned Mexican restaurant.
The shorthand for a competition has turn Beto contra Cruz. But who uses that name, and how, when articulate about a dual possibilities says a lot about that approach they lean. Some of Mr. O’Rourke’s Republican critics repudiate him any curtsy to Latino enlightenment and impute to him as Robert Francis O’Rourke. Some of Mr. Cruz’s Democratic critics repudiate him any pierce divided from Latino enlightenment and impute to him as Rafael Cruz.
The conditions could have been distant opposite for a title writers of America. As Mr. Cruz described his boyhood nicknames in “A Time for Truth,” his 2015 biography: “Until we was thirteen, we was ‘Felito Cruz.’ The problem with that name was that it seemed to rhyme with each vital corn chip on a market.”