That separated Cruz from Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), former Florida governor Jeb Bush and retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson, none of whom are really competing in the "libertarian lane" of the primary that Cruz hopes to own.
"I have no problem whatsoever with people of either gender serving in combat so long as the minimum requirements necessary to do the job are not compromised," Rubio said Saturday.
"If women can meet the requirements, the minimum requirements for combat service, they ought to have the right to do it," said Bush.
In Peterborough, as he criticized those answers, Cruz raised the specter of harm to young women and suggested that his rivals were trying to sound "politically correct" by not rejecting the idea.
“I’m the father of two little girls," he said. "I love those girls with all my heart. They are capable of doing anything in their heart’s desire. But the idea that their government would forcibly put them in a foxhole with a 220-pound psychopath trying to kill them doesn’t make any sense at all. And it’s yet one more sign of this politically correct world where we forget common sense. We’ve got to get back to common sense. We’ve got to get back to a president who says, ‘No, that doesn’t make any sense.’ ”