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Cruz and Kasich agree: Kasich will not compete in Indiana, Cruz will not compete in New Mexico or Oregon

by | Apr 25, 2016

By Dave Andrusko

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Ohio Gov. John Kasich (left) and Texas Senator Ted Cruz

Ohio Gov. John Kasich (left) and Texas Senator Ted Cruz

Trailing front-runner Donald Trump, who last week said he “absolutely” agreed with changing the GOP’s pro-life platform plank, Texas Senator Ted Cruz and Ohio Governor John Kasich announced over the weekend that Kasich would not compete in Indiana and Sen. Cruz would not compete in New Mexico or Oregon.

The rationale is simple. By not splitting the other-than-Trump vote, it gives the candidates a better chance of carrying the state[s], or at least minimizing the number of delegates Trump could secure, thus making it less likely Mr. Trump will secure the1,237 delegates needed to win the nomination.

The Indiana primary is a week from tomorrow. Oregon’s primary is May 17 and New Mexico’s June 7.

Currently Mr. Trump leads with 845 delegates, Sen. Cruz is second with 559. Gov. Kasich is a distant third with 147. Sen. Marco Rubio accumulated 172 delegates before he pulled out.

The deal gives Mr. Cruz a better chance of consolidating the anti-Trump vote in Indiana the way he did in Wisconsin,” the New York Times’s Nate Cohn wrote. “If he can do that, he has a real though by no means certain chance to squeeze past Mr. Trump. A Cruz victory in Indiana would be enough to make Mr. Trump an underdog in the fight for 1,237.”

Both candidates, not surprisingly, talked of a “contested” or “open” convention in Cleveland in July.

“It is abundantly clear that nobody is getting to 1,237, we are heading to a contested convention, and at a contested convention, Donald Trump is in real trouble,” Sen. Cruz said.

“We’re going to a convention, it’s going to be an open convention,” Gov. Kasich said, according to CNN. “All you’ve got to is get the right number of delegates, and you win. If you don’t get the number of delegates, you don’t win.”

Also not surprisingly, Mr. Trump denounced the deal, labeling it a “horrible act of desperation.”

Categories: Politics