Donald Trump Likes Ted Cruz For A Possible VP Slot, But The Two Republicans Don't Agree On Everything
Like the other presidential candidates, Donald Trump isn't quite ready to commit to a vice presidential running mate yet. However, he said on The Laura Ingraham Show Tuesday that he likes Ted Cruz, making the Texas senator a possible choice for Trump. The GOP front-runner said on the show: "He's backed everything I've said ... Ted Cruz is now agreeing with me 100 percent." Trump and Cruz agree on a lot of issues, but are they really on the same page about everything?
After proclaiming that he likes Cruz, Trump was quick to dismiss two of his opponents as potential running mates — Marco Rubio and Jeb Bush. "Rubio is not going to be the one ... it's not going to be Rubio," Trump said. "Rubio is very, very weak on immigration — a member of the Gang of Eight," referring to Rubio's role in writing the 2013 bipartisan comprehensive immigration reform bill that didn't pass in the House. As for Bush, Trump believes his campaign is over (not to mention it would be a major step down for a Bush to become vice president).
Trump was exaggerating a bit when he claimed Cruz agrees with him on every subject. Yes, they agree on a lot, but their plans for America aren't identical. Here's how the GOP candidates compare on the major issues:
Trump's position on immigration (at least from Mexico) is well established — he wants to build a giant wall across the border that he'll make Mexico pay for. When Trump first proposed building a wall to protect Americans from the supposed Mexican criminals crossing the border, Cruz defended him, telling NBC: "I like Donald Trump. I think he's terrific, I think he's brash, I think he speaks the truth."
On Friday, Cruz revealed his immigration plan, which was eerily similar to Trump's, including increasing deportations of undocumented immigrants and — you guessed it — building a wall between the U.S. and Mexico.
While both Republicans want to simplify the tax code, their ideas on how to do that differ. Trump called for decreasing the number of tax brackets from seven to four, so Americans would either pay zero, 10, 20, or 25 percent of their income in taxes. Cruz took his reform a step further, completely abolishing the IRS and establishing a flat tax rate of 10 percent, with the first $36,000 of income for a four-person family tax free.
Although Cruz supported allowing Syrian refugees into the U.S. in the past, he quickly changed his position after the terrorist attacks in Paris on Friday. His office is now drafting a bill that would ban Syrians from entering the country, but it's unclear whether it will ban all refugees or just Muslims.
Trump was never keen on welcoming them, but he's now more opposed to the idea. "We have no idea who these people are, we are the worst when it comes to paperwork," he said on CNBC Monday, insulting both the U.S. and Syria. "This could be one of the great Trojan horses."
Both Trump and Cruz strongly defend Americans' Second Amendment right to bear arms, opposing gun and magazine bans. However, Trump called for the focus to be placed on America's mental health system, but hasn't announced a specific plan on how to improve it.
The two GOP candidates are very pro-cop as opposed to worrying about mass incarceration like their Democratic rivals. Cruz blamed an increase in crime on the "divisiveness and vilification of law enforcement that we've seen throughout the Obama administration" in September. Similarly, when talking about the Black Lives Matter movement in August, Trump said: "We have to give power back to the police, because crime is rampant."
There you have it — Trump and Cruz don't agree 100 percent, but they do have the same ideologies overall.