Via Robert Gehl:
At Barack Obama’s “State of The Union” Address Tuesday, there will be one notable absence: Ted Cruz.
The GOP Senator and presidential candidate will be the only one of the three Republican members of Congress running for president to not attend.
The Texas Senator will be in New Hampshire, stumping for votes in a state where he is sill in third place, behind Trump and Sen. Marco Rubio.
Cruz’s people insist the absence is not a snub and no disrespect is intended, The Hill reports, but it certainly looks like a snub.
Cruz spokesman Rick Tyler told The Hill that the Texas senator will be “disappointed” by the president’s speech regardless of where he’ll be. “It won’t matter because he’ll be just as disappointed in New Hampshire as he will be in the chamber.”
“It’s not a snub. He’s going to be in New Hampshire, working hard to win New Hampshire,” Tyler told The Dallas Morning News. “No disrespect. It just is going to work out this way.”
Skipping the State of the Union probably won’t hurt Cruz in a crowded Republican field – especially with primary voters.
“I don’t think it will necessarily turn off too many primary voters in New Hampshire and Iowa, but there is that risk,” he said.
Schill added, “The choice to stiff the speech can send a message it’s time for change. It may also backfire for people who see it as not respecting office of the presidency.”
For those who will attend, each receives two tickets, one for themselves and one for a guest.
Schill said State of the Union that who a member of Congress brings as a guest to the State of the Union can often be a “news strategy” to help boost a policy the lawmaker cares about and “make it come to life.”
“It’s a way to try to get journalists to write about their guest and their campaign,” Schill said, adding that it also can “personalize and dramatize issues that a candidate cares about.”
Sen. Rand Paul, Rubio and Democratic hopeful Sen. Bernie Sanders will all attend. They get to invite a guest and word is that Rubio will bring a teenager whose Army reservist father was killed in Afghanistan.
Paul hasn’t announced his guest and Sanders is bringing his wife.