What's Happening: Ted Cruz Announces
The freshman Senator kicked off the week with his announcement, making him the first major candidate to declare a White House run. Cruz started his campaign with a speech at conservative Liberty University. The Tea Party favorite is widely thought to be a long-shot candidate, with some speculating that Cruz will pull the Republican presidential field to the right. He is the first major candidate to declare a White House run.
Why Cruz is controversial: Cruz's penchant for rhetorical exaggeration makes him a rock star among his supporters, but alienates him from the mainstream. His leading role in the 2013 government shutdown earned critiques from other Republicans. Cruz's recent climate change denials drew the ire of California Governor Jerry Brown who said that the Texas senator is "absolutely unfit to be running for office" on Meet the Press.
Little-known Tedbits: Questions about the Canada-born senator's presidential eligibility have already been answered. During his time at Harvard Law School, Cruz was seen as an outsider. Among his controversial stances, Cruz believes the tunes to "Amazing Grace" and the theme to Gilligan's Island are interchangeable.