Red scare: New Yorker article insists Sen. Ted Cruz is Joe McCarthy 2.0

Hide your kids, hide your wives, because Cruz Derangement Syndrome is infecting everybody out there. Its latest victim? New Yorker contributor Jane Mayer. In a piece subtly titled “Is Senator Ted Cruz our new Joe McCarthy,” Mayer frets over Ted Cruz having reportedly suggested that, during his time at Harvard Law School, there were a dozen communists on the faculty.

Cruz made the accusation while speaking to a rapt ballroom audience during a luncheon at a conference called “Defending the American Dream,” sponsored by Americans for Prosperity, a non-profit political organization founded and funded in part by the billionaire industrialist brothers Charles and David Koch. Cruz greeted the audience jovially, but soon launched an impassioned attack on President Obama, whom he described as “the most radical” President “ever to occupy the Oval Office.” (I was covering the conference and kept the notes.)

He then went on to assert that Obama, who attended Harvard Law School four years ahead of him, “would have made a perfect president of Harvard Law School.” The reason, said Cruz, was that, “There were fewer declared Republicans in the faculty when we were there than Communists! There was one Republican. But there were twelve who would say they were Marxists who believed in the Communists overthrowing the United States government.”

Others joined Mayer in her dismay:

He’s got to be crazy! Leftist radicals in academia? Heaven forbid!

Even hardcore progressive Matt Yglesias couldn’t really fault Cruz for suggesting that there were communists on the Harvard Law School faculty:

Conservative blogger Dan McLaughlin, who also attended Harvard Law, offered further defense:

Cruz is a solid conservative voice, a voice that, in liberals’ minds, needs to be silenced. When logic fails, turn to desperation. And Mayer’s piece reeks of it. If, as Mayer’s “notes” suggest, Cruz did insist that some seats on the Harvard Law faculty were occupied by communist sympathizers, is that really so far-fetched? Did Mayer sleep through all her college classes?

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