Ted Cruz must first win the support of the GOP’s anti-establishment wing before he can take on Jeb Bush to win the nomination.
Click here to read the full March 23, 2015 analysis from The New York Times quoted in part below:
To win the Republican nomination, Mr. Cruz will have to bring together the party’s anti-establishment wing, which is made of separate-but-overlapping voter blocs, including Christian conservatives, libertarians and Tea Party voters angry with the leadership of both parties. His ultimate goal is to get into a one-on-one campaign against whoever emerges as the favorite of establishment Republicans. To do this, he must find a way to stand out in a crowded lane of conservative hopefuls. In a general election, Mr. Cruz would not attempt to win over centrist voters as much as he would try to galvanize conservatives who did not vote in recent presidential elections because they were dissatisfied with the choices.
Mr. Cruz’s primary prospects depend on a strong performance in Iowa or South Carolina, both of which include substantial numbers of Christian conservatives. If he is unable to win one of those early states, or at least be one of the top conservatives in the states that kick off the nominating process, he will have a difficult time surviving into March, when there is likely to be a rapid succession of contests.