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Tea party drools over Ted Cruz, but can he survive Texas primary?

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For the GOP’s most conserative members, Cruz is “a candidate as good as it gets,” to use conservative columnist George Will’s phrasing

“Let me just say that he embodies everything a Reagan conservative believes in,” wrote Jay Nordlinger at the conservative National Review. “He can talk like no one’s business – he can put into words what we all want to say, and what we all want others to know. The Left can’t lay a glove on him. He’s a doer, too – as he has proven in the Supreme Court, for example.”

Cruz’s crew

It’s that biography fused with positions like supporting a balanced-budget amendment and the full repeal of President Obama’s health-care law that have drawn an outpouring of support from many of the GOP’s most conservative leaders.

Sarah Palin and Rick Santorum are both Cruz backers. In the Senate, tea party godfather Jim DeMint (R) of South Carolina threw his weight (and financial contributions from his political action committee) behind Cruz. Senator DeMint’s like-minded sitting senators Pat Toomey (R) of Pennsylvania, Mike Lee (R) of Utah, and Rand Paul (R) of Kentucky are all in Cruz’s corner – as is Senator Paul’s father, Rep. Ron Paul (R) of Texas.

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