As 2015 came to a close, Donald Trump dominated the Republican field with a commanding lead in the polls. Until now, the unlikely political juggernaut has seemed virtually unstoppable, his nomination secure.
But in December, GOP leaders began talking of a possible brokered convention, leaving many to wonder whether Trump really does have the nomination wrapped up and, if he doesn’t, who among the ever-thinning herd of Republican presidential candidates will take his place.
Recent polls indicate that Senator Ted Cruz may be a serious contender.
Living the dream
Ted Cruz’s candidacy is the capstone of his family’s quintessential American Dream story. His mother, born into a working class family in Delaware, was the first person in her family to go to college. She graduated from Rice University with a degree in mathematics. Senator Cruz recounts how his mother refused to learn to type, so that employers would not overlook her computer programming skills. Cruz’s father was a Cuban immigrant who came to the U.S. without a dime. Working as a dishwasher, he paid his way through college and started his own small business; he met his wife on an oil exploration venture in Texas, and the couple moved to Canada in the 1960s. Their son, Rafael (Ted) Cruz was born in Calgary, Alberta, in December 1970.
Ted spent his formative years in the Houston, Texas, area and went on to attend Princeton University. After earning his degree, Cruz was accepted to Harvard Law School, where he served on the editorial board of three law journals, including the prestigious Harvard Law Review, the Harvard Journal of Law and Public Policy, and the Harvard Latino Law Review. Cruz graduated with High Honors, and Alan Dershowitz, one of his professors, describes Cruz as having been “off-the-charts brilliant.”
Experience in spades
Republican voters have rallied around political inexperience during this election cycle. Inexperience, however, is not something Cruz is likely to boast about. Though he refers to himself as a Washington outsider, and while he might not have much in the way of executive credentials, if the election were decided based on legal resumé alone, Cruz would sail past his competition. In many ways, sharing the stage with Ben Carson and Donald Trump is an insult to Cruz’s legal
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