The political right might not care for video games but Republican Presidential hopeful Ted Cruz just came out as a dirty, rotten gamer. That's an interesting development given that Cruz was a vocal proponent of ending Net Neutrality and exposing the gaming class to ISP price gouging.
The restrictions Cruz advocated could have crippled the game industry by levying surcharges on the data that makes modern games immersive. By eliminating consumers' right to behave how they see fit online, Cruz was willing to jeopardize the future of a rapidly growing multi-billion dollar industry to end "Obamacare for the Internet."
So why, given his very public pro-data cap stance, is he talking about gaming? Does he enjoy first-person shooters? J-RPGs? Who is his favorite Smash Bros. character? According to Cruz, he’s on level 217 on Candy Crush. Oh.
This particular line of publicity seems to come down to leveling-up his relatability. Cruz's tone-deaf bragging about his gamer identity is pure populist posturing aimed at younger voters and fans of House of Cards, on which the president cares more about respawning than his constituents' actual spawn.
Cruz says he played “Japanese fighting games” in college — by which he presumably means Street Fighter II. — but video games have evolved since debate king was slinging hadoukens around the Princeton student center. He seems to be talking about something he doesn’t know anything about.
That he doesn't know isn't such a big deal. That he doesn't seem to care, well, that's a different matter entirely.