Among people who voted for Ted Cruz in 2016, what reasons did they have for preferring Cruz over other Republican presidential candidates?
Ted Cruz was the choice of many among the Religious Right (Cruz is an evangelical Christian and a leader of a form of Christian nationalism). He is pro-life and opposes equal marriage.
Cruz was also a representative of "Movement Conservatism", a grouping that is in favour of small government, uniformly low taxation, and significant reductions in the welfare state.
In most policies, he is consistent with the more hard-line position in the Republican policy spectrum, and gets support from that wing of the party and the country.
2Rather than "hard-line" I would use the word "ideological". Cruz is one of those guys who carries a copy of the Constitution in his jacket pocket and will refer back to the arguments of the founding fathers in order to argue for a policy. So he (like Rand Paul) would have appealed to voters who care about philosophical purity more than pragmatism.– user15103Sep 9, 2018 at 2:22