Sen. Ted Cruz (TP-Texas) has turned from an enthusiastic supporter of Chief Justice John Roberts to a Monday morning quarterback who now attacks Roberts at every turn. Cruz, who failed to score any points in Tuesday’s GOP debate, was put on his heels when asked about his past support of Roberts. Cruz is now making judicial appointments a prime focus of his campaign by arguing that he will put only right wing radical conservatives on the bench. Red has no doubt that Cruz has a long list of potential judicial Neanderthals in his pocket who are chomping at the bit for the chance to serve their corporate masters and pay obeisance to their insurance company overlords by further cutting back on the rights of ordinary Americans. The Texas Tribune can fill you in on Cruz’s plan to make judicial appointments a centerpoint of his campaign.
U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz is finding a new pressure point in his proxy war with former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush: the decision by Bush’s brother to nominate John Roberts, a growing target of conservative scorn, to the U.S. Supreme Court.
Cruz’s offensive, however, is shining more and more light on his own past support for Roberts, an issue that flared up during the second 2016 Republican presidential debate Wednesday in California.
Asked by a moderator whether it was a mistake for George W. Bush to name Roberts to the high court — as Cruz had suggested — Jeb Bush noted that Cruz was a “strong supporter” of Roberts at the time, and indicated Cruz was trying to “rewrite history” with his recent criticism of Roberts. In a 2005 op-ed for the National Review, Cruz, then the solicitor general of Texas, offered a vigorous defense of Roberts, urging the U.S. Senate to “confirm him swiftly.”
Confronted with that position Wednesday, Cruz ultimately made explicit what he has been hinting at over the past few months, especially in the wake of the most recent ruling from the high court salvaging President Barack Obama’s signature health care law. “It is true that after George W. Bush nominated John Roberts, I supported his nomination,” Cruz said. “That was a mistake and I regret that.”
Yet Cruz’s admission speaks to a broader conversation he is hoping to have with his GOP opponents as conservative outrage at the high court metastasizes, particularly following its June decision that legalized gay marriage across the country. Cruz’s question to primary voters boils down to this: Which candidate do you most trust to appoint truly conservative judges?