The Cruz paradox illustrated

With Senator Cruz emerging as a leader in the GOP race, it’s time to tune in and pay attention. My daughter Eliana wrote NR’s August cover story “The paradox of Ted Cruz.” Eliana observed in the piece: “The man who boasts of his ideological purity is perhaps the most obviously tactical candidate.”

Today Eliana and her NR colleague Tim Alberta takes a look at Cruz’s disparagement of “neocons,” first on the campaign trail in Iowa and again in an interview with Bloomberg News. Their column is “Many GOP leaders are suspicious of Ted Cruz.”

GOP foreign policy experts took note of Cruz’s employment of the term. Eliana and Alberta talked to a number of them. On this point Elliott Abrams speaks for me: “He knows that the term in the usual far-left and far-right parlance means warmonger, if not warmongering Jewish advisers, so it is not something he should’ve done.”

As does Eliot Cohen: “It’s an epithet. It’s always used pejoratively. And the main thing I resent about it is, it’s a label, it’s a way of avoiding arguments.”

Asked to respond to criticisms specifically of his using the term neocon, Cruz’s communications adviser, Catherine Frazier, says in an e-mail, “Ted Cruz will never hesitate to tell the truth. Whether others like it or not.” I think it can be viewed somewhat more persuasively as an illustration of “the Cruz paradox.”

Whole thing here.