Ted Cruz Channels Screenwriter Aaron Sorkin to Rebuke Donald Trump

Cruz might have been quoting fictional President Andrew Shepherd.

March 23, 2016, 10:00 AM

— -- From "Jerry Maguire" to the "Princess Bride" and now "The American President" -- presidential candidate Ted Cruz seemed to channel famed screenwriter Aaron Sorkin this morning when standing up to Donald Trump’s threat to “spill the beans" on Cruz’s wife.

In an interview with ABC News’ George Stephanopoulos, Cruz was asked about a Twitter threat made late last night by Trump in which Trump said "Lyin' Ted Cruz just used a picture of Melania from a G.Q. shoot in his ad. Be careful, Lyin' Ted, or I will spill the beans on your wife!”

The ad Trump was referring to was actually from an anti-Trump super PAC not affiliated with Cruz. Cruz stood up to Trump today and at the same time seemed to paraphrase a classic film about life in the White House.

"She is way out of his league. If he wants to get in a character fight he should stick with me,” Cruz told Stephanopoulos.

Cruz set Twitter abuzz because his defense of his wife sounded a lot like President Andrew Shepherd in the 1995 film "The American President." Aaron Sorkin, famous for shows like "The West Wing," wrote the screenplay for the 1995 movie.

During one of the film’s most memorable scenes, President Shepherd, played by Michael Douglas, defends Sydney Ellen Wade, played by Annette Bening.

“Sydney Ellen Wade has done nothing to you, Bob. She has done nothing but put herself through school, represent the interests of public school teachers, and lobby for the safety of our natural resources. You want a character debate, Bob? You better stick with me, 'cause Sydney Ellen Wade is way out of your league,” Shepherd says in the film.

Cruz, a self-described movie buff, has quoted and done impressions of some of his favorite films on the campaign trail.

Cruz has often turned to the world of entertainment to rebuff Trump.

He’s tweeted Janet Jackson’s “Nasty” music video when Trump called him a “nasty guy.”

When Trump raised questions about whether Cruz’s birth to an American mother in Canada disqualified him from the White House, Cruz used a clip from "Happy Days" to respond to Trump.

When Trump called Cruz a maniac, Cruz responded with this.

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