Quick Takes: Cruz Endorses the Candidate He Called a “Pathological Liar”

* Apparently Ted Cruz thinks that being an amoral pathological liar isn’t as important in a presidential candidate and his commitment to appoint a Supreme Court Justice who thinks that child labor laws, Medicare and Social Security are all unconstitutional. Here is what the Texas Senator said today:

After many months of careful consideration, of prayer and searching my own conscience, I have decided that on Election Day, I will vote for the Republican nominee, Donald Trump…

Six key policy differences inform my decision. First, and most important, the Supreme Court…

For some time, I have been seeking greater specificity on this issue, and today the Trump campaign provided that, releasing a very strong list of potential Supreme Court nominees — including Sen. Mike Lee, who would make an extraordinary justice — and making an explicit commitment to nominate only from that list.

* Ian Millhiser gives us the specifics about Sen. Mike Lee as a potential SCOTUS nominee.

Lee’s conservatism, moreover, is rooted in a hard-line understanding of the Constitution that was popular among judges in the early twentieth century but is now widely viewed as wrong and immoral. As a candidate for the senate in 2010, Lee laid out many of the consequences of his vision — a vision he would potentially be in a position to implement if appointed to the nation’s highest court. Among other things, Lee believes that federal child labor laws, Medicare and Social Security are all unconstitutional.

* I remember that during the 2012 election, Mitt Romney was criticized for simply translating his existing ads into Spanish rather than crafting a specific message for Hispanics. Apparently Donald Trump can’t even be bothered with that.

With 46 days until the November elections, and as early voting begins in a handful of states, Trump is on the precipice of becoming the only major-party presidential candidate this century not to reach out to millions of American voters whose dominant, first or just preferred language is Spanish. Trump has not only failed to buy any Spanish-language television or radio ads, he so far has avoided even offering a translation of his website into Spanish, breaking with two decades of bipartisan tradition.

* Hillary Clinton has proposed a tax plan that is not likely to be well-received by the Trump kids.

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton would levy a 65% tax on the largest estates and make it harder for wealthy people to pass appreciated assets to their heirs without paying taxes, expanding the list of tax increases she would impose on the top sliver of America’s affluent.

The estate-tax increase and other new proposals that Mrs. Clinton detailed on Thursday would generate $260 billion over the next decade, enough to pay for her plans to simplify small business taxes and expand the child tax credit, according to the nonpartisan Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, which advocates fiscal restraint.

In all, Mrs. Clinton would increase taxes by about $1.5 trillion over the next decade, increasing federal revenue by about 4%, though that new burden would be concentrated on relatively few households.

* Talk about the Clinton Foundation has receded a bit. But Dylan Matthews set out to answer an important question that got lost in most of the coverage: “Does the Clinton Foundation do worthwhile charitable work?”

After reviewing foundation documents and talking to numerous people in the philanthropy and global health sectors familiar with its work, I’ve come to the conclusion that the Clinton Foundation is a real charitable enterprise that did enormous good. Its projects are of varying effectiveness, but its work is supported by credible, discriminating funders, and the foundation has least one huge accomplishment under its belt — an HIV/AIDS program that saved an untold number of lives.

And — perhaps uncomfortably for liberals and conservatives alike — it is exactly the kind of unsavory-seeming glad-handing and melding of business and politics for which Bill and Hillary Clinton have taken years of criticism that led to its greatest success.

* Historian Doris Kearns Goodwin conducted an interesting interview with President Obama. This is the portion of what he said during their conservation that stood out to me.

So, in my case, you could analyze me and say that my father leaving and being absent was a motivator for early ambition, trying to prove myself to this apparition who had vanished. You could argue that me being a mixed kid in a place where there weren’t a lot of black kids around might have spurred on my ambitions. You could go through a whole litany of things that sparked me wanting to do something important.

But as I got older, then my particular ambitions started cohering around creating a world in which people of different races or backgrounds or faiths can recognize each other’s humanity, or creating a world in which every kid, regardless of their background, can strive and achieve and fulfill their potential.

And those particular ambitions end up being rooted not just in me wanting to prove myself, but they end up being rooted in a particular worldview, a recognition that the world only makes sense to me given my life and my background if, in fact, we’re not just an assortment of tribes that can never understand each other, but that we’re, rather, one common humanity that can meet and learn and love each other.

* That pairs very nicely with something the President said today on Good Morning America.

* Finally, if you are female or care about someone who is, you’ll want to watch this latest ad from the Clinton campaign.

Nancy LeTourneau

Nancy LeTourneau is a contributing writer for the Washington Monthly.