The competition to be the next Ted Cruz is extremely hot within the Republican Party, where a number of emerging challengers are hoping to capitalize on the newest brand name in conservative politics.
In Kansas, Milton R. Wolf opened his fundraising pitch to supporters last week by asking them whether he could be the next Cruz candidate. In Mississippi, Chris McDaniel announced his campaign to unseat Sen. Thad Cochran last week and welcomed the comparison to Mr. Cruz, calling it “a compliment.”
Then there’s Ben Sasse, a university president running for Nebraska’s U.S. Senate seat, who set state fundraising records by opposing Obamacare. He told the Lincoln Journal Star last week that he would have voted with Mr. Cruz to keep the government shut down last week, saying it was a better option than continuing to spend and run up debt.
“They’re tapping into the anti-establishment feelings that are really running high among Republican primary voters,” said Ron Bonjean, a GOP consultant.
In many ways, Mr. Cruz has become the shorthand for the “tea party,” which was already a shorthand way to categorize conservative voters who subscribe to a low-spending, low-taxes philosophy of government.
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