By Robert Reich
1) He’s more fanatical. Trump is a bully and bigot but doesn’t hew to any sharp ideological line. Cruz is a fierce ideologue: He denies the existence of man-made climate change, rejects same-sex marriage, wants to abolish the Internal Revenue Service, believes the 2nd amendment guarantees everyone a right to guns, doesn’t believe in a constitutional divide between church and state, favors the death penalty, opposes international agreements, embraces a confrontational foreign policy, rejects immigration reform, demands the repeal of “every blessed word of Obamacare,” and takes a strict “originalist” view of the meaning of the Constitution.
2) Cruz is a true believer. Trump has no firm principles except making money, getting attention, and gaining power. But Cruz really does detest the federal government, and has spent much of his life embracing radical right economic and political views. When Cruz said “we are facing what I consider to be the epic battle of our generation,” he wasn’t referring to jihadist terrorism but to Obamacare.
3) He’s Smarter. Trump is no slouch but he hasn’t given any indication of a sharp mind. Cruz is razer-sharp: It’s not just his degrees from Princeton and Harvard Law, along with an impressive record at Harvard, or even his winning arguments before the Supreme Court. For his entire adult life he’s been a fierce debater with a intensely-logical debater’s mind.
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