There are two major showdowns coming to North Carolina this month: the Duke-UNC game on March 5, and the GOP Primary on March 15.
Propelled by his Super Tuesday victories in three states, Ted Cruz has decided to press forward in his campaign for the Republican nomination for the presidency, presumably to include the North Carolina Primary as a barbecue-laden pit stop on the path toward a Brokered Convention Hellscape.
Much has been made of Ted Cruz’s face this primary season: its undeniable backpfeifengesicht, its counter intuitive emote, his inability to smile naturally. The most flattering of these notes concerns his resemblance to Duke University basketball player Grayson Allen (with visual aids helpfully compiled by the esteemed Washington Post). Grayson’s political allegiances are unknown, and my sources indicate that he is by all accounts lovely and undeserving of this regrettable craniofacial happenstance.
But Duke’s guard-in-chief has provoked similarly inflamed rhetoric, albeit for offenses less grandiose than those of the Texas senator. Two of my favorite descriptors are “annoyingly competent” and “seemingly designed to make you angry,” followed promptly by “very, very, good, of course.”
Now: North Carolinians have plenty of meaningful matters to be concerned about, including racial gerrymandering and a confusing voter ID law. But in advance of the Duke-UNC game, I’d like to explore a harebrained hypothesis: that Cruz’s resemblance to Grayson Allen will deter some hardened Carolina fans, ultimately costing him some votes – and a delegate. And in North Carolina, proportional representation means that Ted Cruz’s electoral fate could hang in the balance.