Today on the homepage, we publish Part II of my series “A Friend in the Arena.” This series attempts to answer the question, “What’s it like to have a friend run for president?” (In my case, the friend and candidate is Ted Cruz.)
Here on the Corner, I want to go back to something I discussed in Part I. I pointed out that Cruz is exceptionally versatile. He’s a legal eagle, of course. (Harvard Law Review, clerkship with chief justice, solicitor general of Texas, etc.) He knows a boatload about domestic policy — the alphabet soup of our government and its programs. He is steeped in economics, particularly of the classical-liberal variety. He is well versed in foreign policy, defense, and national security. And he knows the “social issues”: abortion, school prayer, and the rest of it.
Is school prayer still an issue? It was hot when I was young. Anyway …
Cruz is a strict constructionist, or constitutionalist. A policy reformer and a bit of a wonk. A free-marketeer. A hawk. And a social conservative — staunch against abortion, for example, and for religious liberty. Cruz is what some call “a full-spectrum conservative.”
Which leads me to the point of this post. I’d like to tell a story. Several years ago, I wrote a piece about New Mexico’s then-new governor, Susana Martinez. I said she was a Reagan man (pardon the expression), a “full service” Republican or conservative. Kevin Williamson said he was pleased by my coinage: “full service.”
Honestly, it was an accident. I was trying to think of “full spectrum.” And it just came out “full service.”
Which I kind of like, actually. Out of the mouths of babes …