Ted Cruz was born in Canada in 1970 to an American mother; his Cuban father was not a citizen at that time. According to his official bio:
Ted graduated with honors from Princeton University and with high honors from Harvard Law School. He served as a law clerk to Chief Justice William Rehnquist on the U.S. Supreme Court. He was the first Hispanic ever to clerk for the Chief Justice of the United States.
From 2004-09, he taught U.S. Supreme Court Litigation as an Adjunct Professor of Law at the University of Texas School of Law.
Prior to becoming Solicitor General, he served as the Director of the Office of Policy Planning at the Federal Trade Commission, as Associate Deputy Attorney General at the U.S. Department of Justice, and as Domestic Policy Advisor on the 2000 Bush-Cheney campaign.
In the Senate, Ted serves on the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation; the Committee on Armed Services; the Committee on the Judiciary; the Special Committee on Aging; and the Committee on Rules and Administration.
At CPAC in 2014, Sen. Cruz writes that he “outlined a positive agenda that includes an American energy renaissance, repealing Obamacare, expanding school choice, abolishing the IRS, ending corporate welfare, auditing the Federal Reserve, and term limits.”
- On elections: “Let’s look back at the past four elections, 2006, 2008, 2010, and 2012. The only election we won was 2010, when we stood unequivocally for principle….Who are the most two people who have energized young people? Ronald Reagan and Ron Paul. What did they do? They painted a bold picture of what America can do….You win elections by standing for principles and believing that there is a better tomorrow.”
- “How do we inspire people? Number one we tell the truth…. The truth is Washington is corrupt. You are in some of the richest counties in the country. As more and more people make great wealth in Washington, young people, single moms, and small business owners suffer…. Real change is changing the corruption that is here in Washington, D.C.”
As more and more people accumulate great wealth, others suffer: that’s correct whether or not there is a connection, but why focus only on Washington wealth? (While Cruz’s wealth is moderate for the Senate, he is a multi-millionaire) In line with Republican dogma, Cruz would address inequality by promoting growth — rescinding regulations, downsizing government, and reducing taxes on businesses.
- On young people: “Under President Obama, the American Dream is harder to achieve…. If you were to sit down and hammer the living daylights out of young people, you couldn’t do better than the Obama Administration. Obamacare is a massive wealth transfer. And who the heck is going to pay for our national debt?”
Obamacare is a massive wealth transfer? Maybe, if Cruz meant transfer from the treasury to insurance companies, but Obamacare is primarily universal health insurance.
- “We need to stop bankrupting our country. What we’re doing to our kids and grandkids is morally wrong. If we don’t change course, they will be left working to pay off the debts their parents left them with. We are need to turn this around.”
Cruz’s assertion that kids and grandkids must pay off a national debt left to them by their parents is nonsense. The national debt is unlike a personal loan or mortgage on a farm. No individual or generation of persons is responsible for “paying it off.”
- On Religion: “There is no liberty more important than religious liberty,” said Cruz in his keynote speech at the Network of Iowa Christian Home Educators’ annual state Capitol lobbying day. He later added: “This nation was founded by men and women fleeing religious oppression and coming here seeking the freedom to seek out our lord God almighty with all of our hearts, minds and souls, free of the government getting in the way.” (Huffington Post)
Cruz seems to ignore the fact that the first line in the Bill of Rights guarantees religious freedom and establishes the right to be free from religion, particularly government sponsored religion.
Cruz said this to the Daily Caller:
- “Look. I am a conservative,” he asserted. “I am a fiscal conservative, I am a social conservative. I think we’ve seen that in order for the Republican Party to succeed we need to be a big tent. We need to embrace American values, American values that have been present in our country . . . for centuries.”
When Cruz talks of American values, he clearly is thinking of far-right Republican values, rather than those shared by a majority of Americans–“right to life” and traditional marriage for example.
- “There are some who say the Republican Party should no longer stand for life,” he continued. “I don’t agree with that. There are some who say the Republican Party should no longer stand for traditional marriage. I don’t agree with them either. I think we should continue to defend our shared values.”
This last statement sets Cruz apart from Senator Rand Paul who recommended at CPAC that the GOP soften its stand on some controversial issues to attract moderate voters. Cruz’s Cuban heritage may partly explain why this obviously intelligent establishment politician educated at a liberal eastern university would turn so sharply to the right. A right-leaning minority in the GOP might engineer his nomination, but he would have to soften his views rapidly to have much chance to be elected.
© William Hungerford – March 2014