Ted Cruz Furiously Responds to Donald Trump's Meme of His Wife

March 24th 2016

Alex Mierjeski

On Thursday, Sen. Ted Cruz called Donald Trump a "sniveling coward" over an attack on his wife. It was the latest in a heated back-and-forth between the top two Republican presidential candidates — over their wives — which escalated during a campaign stop in Wisconsin.

Cruz was criticizing Trump for tweeting out a meme comparing the physical attractiveness of the candidates' respective wives, on Wednesday night.

"I don't get angry often, but you mess with my wife, you mess with my kids — that'll do it every time," Cruz told NBC's Hallie Jackson.

"Donald, you're a sniveling coward. Leave Heidi the hell alone," he added, jabbing a finger into an off-screen camera.

Cruz's statement solidified a fierce opposition that has characterized the relationship between the two candidates recently. Asked whether he would support Trump, who is on course to become the Republican nominee, Cruz balked, insisting that he would beat Trump in the primary contest to win the nomination.

"I'm going to beat him for the nomination," Cruz told Jackson. "Donald Trump will not be the nominee."

Bad blood and a series of memes about the candidates' wives.

On Wednesday night, the real estate mogul manually retweeted a meme comparing the attractiveness of Melania Trump and Heidi Cruz:

The tweet was a retaliation for a previous meme released by a pro-Cruz super PAC that featured Trump's own wife, Melania, sprawled naked on a fur rug. The ad appeared ahead of Tuesday's caucus in Utah.

Attack on Melania Cruz

Both memes focused on the physicality of the candidates' respective wives. Trump accused the Cruz campaign of knowing about the Melania ad ahead of its release.

Cruz, for his part, denied any involvement. However, he apparently felt the need to dive in to the fray on Thursday. It's not the first time Trump has gotten himself into hot water for attacking fellow candidates' wives, but the exchange marked a notable low. It's anyone's guess what the next move will look like.