The budding bromance that appeared to be developing last fall between GOP presidential candidates Donald Trump and Ted Cruz is a distant memory since Cruz began to nip at Trump’s heels in the race. Since then, the two candidates have been at odds about just about everything.
But they’ve just agreed on one thing: that Gov. John Kasich should get out of the primary race.
Via Fox News:
Both Republican presidential candidates have turned up the pressure on Kasich, casting the Ohio governor as a nuisance candidate whose presence in the race is only frustrating their efforts to snag the nomination.
“If I didn’t have Kasich, I automatically win,” Trump claimed Sunday evening in West Allis, Wis.
Even Texas Sen. Cruz, who is second to Trump in the delegate race and eager to whittle the contest down to a two-man battle in the final weeks before the convention, is losing patience with what he describes as Kasich’s “spoiler” bid.
On Monday, Cruz said talk of someone other than him or Trump winning the Republican nomination at a contested convention is “nothing less than a pipe dream.”
The complaints are building ahead of Wisconsin’s primary on Tuesday.
It’s yet another contest that Kasich, who has won only his home state of Ohio, likely has no shot at winning. But Kasich’s out-in-the-open strategy is not to win in the traditional, state-by-state way — but prevent his rivals from clinching the nomination with the requisite 1,237 delegates, in order to trigger a contested convention in Cleveland.
The two candidates with a more plausible path to the nomination – particularly Trump – are signaling the time has come, though, for Kasich to get out.
Trump said Sunday it was unfair for Kasich to continue campaigning. He suggested Kasich follow the lead of former candidates Marco Rubio and Jeb Bush — and quit. He said earlier Sunday he had shared his concerns with Republican National Committee officials at a meeting in Washington this past week.
While Kasich defends his presence in the race, Cruz told Fox News that Kasich at this point is “mathematically eliminated” and right now is only playing the role of “spoiler.”
“A vote for Kasich is a vote for Donald Trump,” Cruz said. “You cannot be the nominee if you lose every state other than your home state.”
As of Monday afternoon, Trump had 736 delegates, Cruz had 463 and Kasich had 143.
Kasich acknowledges he cannot catch up in the delegate race, leaving a contested convention his only path to victory. Still, Kasich suggested that a contested convention would not involve the chaos that party leaders fear.
“Kids will spend less time focusing on Bieber and Kardashian and more time focusing on how we elect presidents,” Kasich told ABC. “It will be so cool.”
Trump has famously warned a contested convention might spark riots.
Ted Cruz today warned “the people would quite rightly revolt” if the party drafts an alternate candidate. He also stated in no uncertain terms that the rules put in place for the 2012 election — that state a candidate a candidate must have won a certain number of states in order to secure the nomination — should hold for 2016, as Politico reports:
“You know what? What’s good for the goose is good for the gander,” Cruz said. “The rules are the rules. And if you want to win, you have to win at the ballot box.”
Know we have a lot of passionate Trump and Cruz supporters out there who, like the candidates themselves, haven’t found much to agree on lately. What do y’all say about this? Anyone out there who thinks Gov. Kasich is right to continue on in the race at this point?
[Note: This article was written by Michelle Jesse, Associate Editor]