Cruz-HeadshotIn the year 2004, I was able to vote for the first time in a presidential election year. I do not recall who I voted for in the state elections, but I know that I did not cast a vote for either George W. Bush or John Kerry. Not voting for Kerry was a no-brainer for most conservative Christians; fewer of us refused to vote for Bush, on a number of grounds: his unconstitutional and foolish foreign policy, his appointment of homosexuals to important offices, No Child Left Behind, etc. Needless to say, having not voted for Bush (and having not materially changed my social and political principles over the next 4 years), I did not vote for John McCain either, who was basically Bush on steroids. Neither did I vote for Mitt Romney, who, while more likeable than McCain, was a northeastern Rockefeller Republican whose health care plan helped set the stage for the abomination known as Obamacare.

The odds are I won’t be voting in the presidential election again this year, since Donald Trump appears to be on the path to the nomination. I have been astounded to see how many Americans are flocking to his standard, even though there is not a scintilla of evidence that he will do anything that he says. Just about every position he is so loudly articulating now he has at one point or other in his life opposed, and he has contributed money to liberal politicians almost his entire adult life. It was not that long ago that Mr. Trump was on Meet the Press telling Tim Russert that he supposed partial-birth abortion. And yet, he continues to draw a large proportion of conservative evangelical voters, who seem only to care that Mr. Trump talks tough on immigration and takes no trash from the media. Both of these qualities may be endearing, but any superficial observation of Mr. Trump’s record over the years show that he is eminently untrustworthy, besides the fact that he is invariably short of specifics when asked to describe how he will “make America great again.”

That being said, I am not supporting Ted Cruz just because he is the only remaining legitimate opposition to Trump. I am a firm disbeliever in the doctrine of voting for “the lesser of two evils.” As has been often said, voting for the lesser of two evils is still voting for evil. I cannot, as a conscientious Christians, justify before God the act of voting for a liberal Neocon like John Kasich who seems to have little problem with homosexuality, abortion, or anything else that ought to matter to those who are concerned about God’s priorities. And, while Marco Rubio offers far better rhetoric on the social issues, his record on immigration, along with his bellicose and reckless foreign policy, makes him someone I would not care to support.

I support Ted Cruz because he seems to be the best chance we have had in a long time to elect a genuine conservative who also boldly espouses biblical principles. The detestation in which he is held by the “establishment,” both right and left, is to me a badge of honor. His calling out the deceit of the feckless weasel, Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell on the senate floor was one of the few great moments in the modern history of that formerly august body. His record before winning a senate seat in Texas as solicitor general of the state, defending Ten Commandments monuments, arguing before the Supreme Court for gun rights, among other important issues, is also highly commendable.
I first heard of Ted Cruz when Ron Paul (the only candidate I supported during the last election cycle) endorsed his senate campaign in 2012. Not long after he went to Washington, I began to notice his name coming up often. I do not recall what issue was under debate at the time, but on one of the early occasions when his Senate colleagues grew angry with him, he made the remark that he had been elected to represent the people of Texas, not to be part of a club in Washington, D.C. By and large, he has maintained that statesmanlike attitude throughout the past 4 years. Recently, I heard him tell Sean Hannity during a radio interview that he was not very subtly told when he was making a nuisance of himself defending conservative issues, that the things he was doing and saying were only things Republicans talked about on the campaign trail, not things they actually did in Washington. Thankfully, there are a small handful, among them Cruz, Mike Lee, and to a certain extent Rand Paul, who not only talk the talk, but also walk the walk. I believe one of the reasons Ted Cruz is so thoroughly abominated by establishment Republicans like McConnell, McCain, and Lindsey Graham, is because he essentially forced the Republicans to shut down the government over Obamacare funding. Had the Republicans enjoyed genuine conservative leadership, instead of compromisers and establishment shills like McConnell and John Boehner in leadership position, who knows what may have been accomplished?

Cruz’s crusade against Obamacare is one major reason why I have decided to support him in this election. There are many other reasons as well: his firm support of gun rights, his strident opposition to the “Gang of 8 amnesty bill,” which was one of the primary reasons it went down to defeat; his attacks on global warming eco-nuts in committee hearings; his call to impeach, or amend the Constitution to end lifetime appointment for Supreme Court justices after the gay marriage ruling; his support of Kim Davis; his being the only Republican candidate to vocally reject the proposition of including women in the draft; his willingness to invoke the name of God and the authority of scripture in public speeches and on the campaign trail. Granted, the last could be (and has often been) done for political purposes, yet I think Senator Cruz has behaved in such a way as to give us hope that he is a man who does indeed truly fear God.

Needless to say, Ted Cruz is not the perfect candidate. His foreign policy is still too interventionist for my tastes, though he seems much more cautious and temperate than several of his fellow candidates, some of whom seem to want to go to war with everyone from Russia to Iran to ISIS. Some have pointed out that his wife is a former member of the Council on Foreign Relations, and also is employed by Goldman Sachs. Admittedly, those are red flags for someone like myself; yet, it is possible that not everyone involved with the CFR or Goldman Sachs is a villain, and ultimately, Cruz’s record, rather than his wife’s associations, are of greater importance and relevance in my view. Cruz is too much of a free trader (one area where I think Donald Trump makes the most sense) in my opinion, though to his credit he has opposed the Trans-Pacific trade deal now sitting in Congress. But these things being said, Cruz has proven to be a genuine conservative, and seems to have a genuine regard for the Constitution, which is what I am looking for in a candidate. That is why (unless something bad comes out on him between now and November), if in God’s inscrutable providence Ted Cruz wins the Republican nomination, I will be able to vote for the first time in my life in a presidential election.