Ted Cruz's carefully crafted plan to become the right-wing standard-bearer in the Republican presidential race is pretty much on schedule. His campaign has more cash than any rival's, is backed by a well-heeled super PAC and is gaining in the polls. The Bloomberg Politics/Des Moines Register poll has him in third place in Iowa, where caucuses on Feb. 1 will give voters their first chance to cast ballots.
For the Texas Senator then, it's so far, so good. But now Cruz has a new problem: the neurosurgeon and political novice Ben Carson. The big news of the Bloomberg/Des Moines Register survey is that Carson has surged into the lead, favored by 28 percent of Iowa Republicans who said they're likely to attend a caucus. Next comes Donald Trump with 19 percent. Cruz is third with 10 percent.