(The Nation) -- Ted Cruz is positioning himself as the “true” conservative candidate for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination. The senator from Texas wants his fellow partisans to believe that he is the surest heir of the secular saint of modern conservatism: Ronald Reagan. Cruz says he has read stacks of Reagan biographies to bone up on policy and presidential demeanor. He tells crowds that Reagan understood that “simply giving voice to values of American people has power, and speaking the truth with a smile has enormous potency. It’s what Reagan did every day and what I’m trying to do in this campaign.”
Unfortunately for Cruz, despite all his alleged reading and actual pontificating, he does not appear to know very much about his favored president.
The senator—who is rarely accused of “speaking the truth with a smile”—is battling billionaire Donald Trump for the votes of conservatives in the first-caucus state of Iowa and the first-primary state of New Hampshire.
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