Ted Cruz's Political Views
Ted Cruz Biography
Texas Senator Ted Cruz is an rising star in conservative politics, winning the 2016 Iowa Caucus and vaulting himself into strong contention for the Republican Presidential nomination in 2016 before ultimately losing the nomination to Donald Trump. Cruz is a darling of the Tea Party who defeated sitting Texas Lieutenant Governor David Dewhurst in a huge upset in the Republican primary in 2012, easily winning election to the U.S. Senate that fall. Cruz famously led the GOP's shutdown of the federal government in the fall of 2013, an attempt to win concessions from President Obama and the Democratically controlled Senate that ultimately failed, but which raised Cruz's stature in the eyes of many Tea Party activists and conservative Republicans. Given his meteoric rise to the Senate at a relatively young age (Cruz was elected at age 41), many of compared his career arc to that of Barack Obama. This hub will take an unbiased look at Senator Cruz's positions on the key issues that will impact the 2016 election - how does he stack up to Jeb Bush, Rand Paul, Ben Carson, Marco Rubio, and other leading Republicans?
Ted Cruz on the Issues
Cruz is a self-professed member of the Tea Party, a fact reflected in his views on the major political issues currently being debated in Washington:
1. Cruz on the Budget Deficit and Government Spending: Like many conservative Republicans, Senator Cruz has expressed concern over the federal budget deficit and what he considers to be out of control government spending. While running for Senate in 2012, his campaign website promoted the fact that "Ted Cruz has proven himself time and time again as a firm advocate of cutting taxes. Mr. Cruz was one of the conservatives that took the Taxpayer Protection Pledge sponsored by the ATR. This pledge commits signers to oppose any efforts in increasing tax rates for businesses and/or individuals. This pledge is a perfect example of Ted's commitment to lowering taxes."
2. Cruz on Health Care: Cruz is an opponent of the health care reform bill passed by Congress and signed by President Obama in 2009. In 2013, Cruz attempted to have "Obamacare" repealed by attaching an amendment to a non related bill. Cruz expressed the reasoning for his attempt as follows: "Our economy is stagnant right now -- last quarter it was 0.1 percent -- and sadly, every Democrat who voted, voted to continue implementing Obamacare even as the economy is gasping for breath." Cruz has not put forward a detailed alternative plan to cover the millions of currently uninsured Americans who will be covered by Obamacare, however, he has suggested that Medicare can be returned to long term solvency by "gradually increasing the eligibility age and by moving to a premium support system that expands choices for seniors, opens up innovation, and utilizes market forces to rein in healthcare costs." Cruz has repeatedly stressed the importance of lower tax rates in spurring economic growth, stating in 2012 that he thinks we need to "slash the corporate tax rate" in order to increase the performance of the economy.
3. Cruz on Foreign Policy: Cruz has not made many public statements about foreign policy during his time in office, instead focusing on domestic issues. During his Senate run in 2012, he did explain his position on Afghanistan to a reporter, stating "What I don't think is acceptable is for us just to stay there in perpetuity and try to rebuild each nation into a perfect utopia. That's not our job and not our role. I think we have an important role stopping and killing terrorists."
4. Cruz on Gun Control: Cruz is a strong opponent of gun control. In 2013, he explained his position when asked about bi-partisan Congressional efforts to require background checks for the mentally handicapped and limit large-capacity clips for semi-automatic weapons, stating: "I do not support that agenda. In fact, I intend to help lead the fight to stop Sen. Dianne Feinstein's bill to pass aggressive gun control, and in particular to pass a national firearms registry. I don't think the federal government has any business keeping a list of law-abiding Americans who exercise their constitutional right to keep and bear arms."
5. Cruz on the Environment: Cruz has expressed skepticism about the contribution of humans to global warming, responding to a question about the subject during his senate run by stating: "My view of climate science is the same as that of many climate scientists: We need a much better understanding of the climate before making policy choices that would impose substantial economic costs on our Nation. There remains considerable uncertainty about the effect of the many factors that influence climate: the sun, the oceans, clouds, the behavior of water vapor (the main greenhouse gas), volcanic activity, and human activity. Nonetheless, climate-change proponents based their models on assumptions about those factors, and now we know that many of those assumptions were wrong." While Cruz has not explicitly stated whether or not he believes that humans cause climate change, he has repeatedly stated that the government should have no roll in regulating carbon emissions, describing EPA regulations to help curb them as potentially having a "devastating impact on many American families and businesses if we don't roll them back."
6. Cruz on Social Issues: Cruz is extremely conservative on most social issues. He is strongly opposed to gay marriage, during the 2012 campaign, his website promoted the fact that "As the Solicitor General of Texas, I had a proven record of fighting to successfully defend traditional marriage in Texas, as the union between one man and one woman." Cruz is also strongly opposed to a women's right to choose, as his website states, "Ted Cruz has fought to protect innocent human life. He played a leading role in several important cases, including defense of the partial-birth abortion ban, parental consent laws, and prohibiting state funds from going to abortion. These cases have all been part of the ongoing effort to ensure that every child in America receives the protection and respect he or she deserve."
7. Cruz on Immigration: An immigrant himself (Cruz was born in Calgary, CA to a mother who was a U.S. citizen and is therefore eligible to run for President), Cruz has expressed support for efforts to reform U.S. immigration policy provided those reforms do not provide a pathway to citizenship for illegal immigrant, even if those immigrants have committed no other crimes. In 2013, he told reporters, "I have serious concerns about any legislation that would create a pathway to citizenship for those who are here illegally. I think doing so is inconsistent with the rule of law and is profoundly unfair to the millions of legal immigrants who have followed the rules and waited in line for years — and sometimes decades — to come here legally."
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