Ted Cruz set aside his many differences with Donald Trump on Friday to endorse for president a man whom he once called a “serial philanderer,” a “pathological liar,” “utterly amoral,” and a “sniveling coward”; who insulted his wife’s looks; who insinuated Cruz’s father was involved in the assassination of John F. Kennedy; who said he wouldn’t even accept his endorsement; and who for months mocked him mercilessly with a schoolyard taunt, “Lyin’ Ted.”
The Texas senator announced his support for the Republican nominee late Friday afternoon in a Facebook post, writing that the possibility of a Hillary Clinton presidency was “wholly unacceptable” and that he was keeping his year-old commitment to back the party’s choice. Cruz listed six policy-focused reasons why he was backing Trump, beginning with the importance of appointing conservatives to the Supreme Court and citing Trump’s recently expanded list of potential nominees. Other reasons included Obamacare—which Trump has vowed to repeal—immigration, national security, and Trump’s newfound support for Cruz’s push against an Obama administration move to relinquish U.S. oversight of an internet master directory of web addresses.
“These are six vital issues where the candidates’ positions present a clear choice for the American people,” Cruz wrote. “If Clinton wins, we know—with 100% certainty—that she would deliver on her left-wing promises, with devastating results for our country. My conscience tells me I must do whatever I can to stop that.”
Yet if there are six reasons Cruz gives for embracing Trump, there are another five for why his endorsement is the most stunning about-face of any of the Republicans who once opposed the real-estate tycoon.
Words No Longer Matter
The examples at the start of this article are just a small sample of the vitriol exchanged between Cruz and Trump during the height of their primary battle. Yes, Trump exchanged insults with just about all of his Republican opponents, and many of them—like “Little Marco” Rubio—ended up endorsing him. But Cruz is now backing a man for the nation’s highest office that he considers to be a liar, a coward, and amoral. Those are charges you don’t just take back or minimize, and to do so reinforces the cynicism that many voters have about the political process.
This article continues at [The Atlantic] Five Reasons Why Ted Cruz's Endorsement of Donald Trump Is Stunning