He is weighted down by all of the liabilities that any standard Republican candidate would bring to the general election. He advocates for a huge tax cut for the rich and deregulation of Wall Street, and would eliminate the Clean Power Plan and take away health insurance from some 20 million people who’ve gained it through Obamacare. He has defined himself as more militant and uncompromising than any other Republican in Congress, and many of his fellow Republican officeholders have depicted him as a madman. This is a broad heuristic — Ted Cruz is the candidate whose main reservation with the Republican Party is that it’s too thoughtful and compromising. This definition colors Cruz’s public image and accounts for high unfavorable ratings despite a relatively brief time on the public stage.Some specifics:
Begin with taxes. In addition to the de rigueur ginormous tax cut for rich people, Cruz proposes a massive shift of the tax burden away from income taxes to sales taxes. So, not only would Cruz’s plan give nearly half of its benefit to the highest-earning one percent of taxpayers (who would save, on average, nearly half a million dollars a year in taxes per household), but it would actually raise taxes on the lowest-earning fifth:
Cruz has taken other stances from which other Republicans with national ambitions have shied away. He proposes to eliminate, among other agencies, the Department of Education, a cause most Republicans abandoned two decades ago as a hopeless political albatross. He’s committed to a legal and political rollback of legalized same-sex marriage, and has embraced a pastor who has endorsed the death penalty for homosexuality. He opposes all abortion, without exceptions for rape or incest. Republicans are justifiably reluctant to defend a vision of America where happily married same-sex couples have their unions involuntarily annulled and women are forced to spend nine months carrying their rapist’s child to term.The vibes I get from Cruz are Greg Stillson meets Damien. Where he walks, clouds obscure the sun, birds fall from the sky, dogs howl, cats hide, babies cry. He seems to be the kind of guy even Nixon wouldn't have hired to work in his White House because he wouldn't have trusted him.
But hey, as Chait contends, while bad, better than Trump--- though this depends on the meaning of 'better'.