Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) became the first official candidate for the 2016 presidential election just a few weeks ago. A staunch conservative, Cruz has a lot of supporters as well as plenty of people who disagree with everything he says. Let’s take a look at some of his more notable political stances.
1. He wants to abolish the IRS
Cruz believes that the IRS isn’t a necessary service if we change our tax code, and that it should be abolished. Cruz said on Fox News’s Cashin’ In that “the IRS has not honored its trust with the American people.” He suggested that the Obama administration has used the IRS to target its political enemies. “It’s a manifestation of too much power in the federal government,” Cruz said. “When the federal government has that much power in individual lives, it’s an invitation to be abused.”
Cruz has suggested that the country abolish the IRS and move to a simple flat tax where the average American can fill out taxes on postcard. “Put down how much you earn, put down a deduction for charitable contributions, home mortgage and how much you owe,” he said on Cashin’ In. “It ought to be a simple one page postcard, and take the agents, the bureaucracy out of Washington and limit the power of government.”
IRS Commissioner John Koskinen responded to Cruz’s suggestion, saying, “When you say you’re going to abolish the IRS and everybody will fill out a small card, somebody has to collect the money.” He added, “You could call them something other than the IRS if that made you feel better.”
2. He denies climate change
One of Cruz’s well-known stances is that he does not believe in climate change. In an interview with the Texas Tribune, he discussed how he was a branded a “denier” and “heretic” by “global warming alarmists.” He drew a comparison between himself and Galileo, but he’s example didn’t get the facts straight.
“On the global warming alarmists, anyone who actually points to the evidence that disproves their apocalyptical claims, they don’t engage in reasoned debate,” Cruz said. “What do they do? They scream, ‘You’re a denier.’ They brand you a heretic. Today, the global warming alarmists are the equivalent of the flat-Earthers. It used to be [that] it is accepted scientific wisdom the Earth is flat, and this heretic named Galileo was branded a denier.”
Unfortunately for Cruz, that’s not what happened with Galileo. People knew the Earth was long before Galileo. What he disagreed with was the belief held by the dominant Catholic Church that the Earth was the center of the universe and everything in space revolved around the Earth. Galileo was labeled a heretic by the Church for suggested the Earth revolved around the sun. Cruz comparing himself to Galileo doesn’t line up with the story he’s telling — not to mention that Galileo was a scientist and Cruz is not. The scientists who first brought climate change to the attention of the world were the Galileos of their time.
Cruz said that “global warming alarmists” don’t “like to look at the actual facts and the data.” He also cited “a Newsweek article from the 1970s talking about global cooling” that turned out to be incorrect. The article now fuels politicians like Cruz who want reject scientific evidence — so much so that even the author of the original article has said that people shouldn’t use his article to deny climate change. Cruz claims there is no data showing that climate change is happening when there’s plenty of it.
3. He’s not afraid to be super partisan
Given his religious first TV ad for his presidential campaign, it’s not surprising that Cruz is a big proponent of religious freedom. He chose to take a stance even on the controversial anti-gay bills in Indiana and Arkansas. He expressed support for both the state legislatures for passing bills “protecting religious liberty,” and said, “Religious liberty is not some fringe view. It is the basis of this country.”
Indiana’s recent religious objections law was met with derision by many businesses and convention organizers. The law, which, under the guise of religious freedom, would allow discrimination against gays and lesbians, led to massive campaigns to boycott business in the state. In his first stop in Iowa since announcing his run for president, Cruz spoke negatively of the businesses who objected to the law.
“I think it is unfortunate that large companies today are listening to the extreme left wing agenda that is driven by an aggressive gay marriage agenda,” Cruz said, according to CNN.
Over half the country supports the right for same-sex couples to marry, and those marriages are legal in 37 states, but Cruz is passionately opposed to same-sex marriage.
“Every one of us is concerned about the Supreme Court’s gay marriage decision likely coming in June,” Cruz said. “The first thing and I think the most important thing every one of us can do, is pray. Lift up in prayer.”