Sam Stein was referring to Cruz's McCarthy like comments about Chuck Hagel:
The conservative crazies at NewsBusters tried to soften Cruz's McCarthyism with this editorial "eye-roll" from Cal Thomas:
Cal Thomas Column: The Left's Lazy 'McCarthyite' Attack on Ted CruzYes, liberals are just being lazy making easy charges of McCarthyism. It still doesn't get away from the fact that Cruz is okay with very old transcripts of Hagel speeches, but can't handle his own 3 year old comments:
Sen. Ted Cruz’s office told TheBlaze it was “curious” that the New Yorker would dig up a years-old speech for the purpose of dubbing him “our new McCarthy.”
Nevertheless, Cruz spokeswoman Catherine Frazier said the Texas Republican’s “substantive point” about Harvard Law School being home to Communists “was absolutely correct.”
Cruz, the New Yorker reported, said in a 2010 speech that President Barack Obama “would have made a perfect president of Harvard Law School” because “there were fewer declared Republicans in the faculty when we were there than Communists! There was one Republican. But there were 12 who would say they were Marxists who believed in the Communists overthrowing the United States government.”Charles Fried, a Republican who served as President Ronald Reagan’s solicitor general and taught Cruz at Harvard Law, disputed the notion.
Professor Duncan Kennedy, for instance, a leader of the faction, who declined to comment on Cruz’s accusation, counts himself as influenced by the writings of Karl Marx. But he regards himself as a social democrat, not a Communist, and has never advocated the overthrow of the U.S. government by Communists.
Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) told the New York Times earlier this month Cruz “was really reminiscent of a different time and place, when you said, ‘I have here in my pocket a speech you made on such and such a date,’ and, of course, nothing was in the pocket.”