Politics

Ted Cruz and John Kasich Team Up to Stop Donald Trump

April 25th 2016

By:
Kyle Jaeger

On Sunday, Republican presidential candidates Texas Sen. Ted Cruz and Ohio Gov. John Kasich announced plans to effectively team up in an effort to defeat GOP front-runner Donald Trump in three upcoming primary elections.

In statements released by both campaigns, Cruz and Kasich outlined a strategy that's intended to slow Trump's momentum, CNN reports. Cruz will focus his campaigning efforts on Indiana, and Kasich will lead the charge in Oregon and New Mexico.

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"Having Donald Trump at the top of the ticket in November would be a sure disaster for Republicans," Cruz's campaign manager Jeff Roe said in a statement posted on the campaign website. "Not only would Trump get blown out by Clinton or Sanders, but having him as our nominee would set the party back a generation."

"Due to the fact that the Indiana primary is winner-take-all statewide and by congressional district, keeping Trump from winning a plurality in Indiana is critical to keeping him under 1,237 bound delegates before Cleveland," John Weaver, Kasich's chief strategist, said in a statement posted to the campaign website. "We are very comfortable with our delegate position in Indiana already, and given the current dynamics of the primary there, we will shift our campaign's resources West and give the Cruz campaign a clear path in Indiana."

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Only three states were named as part of the coordinated strategy, and in the statement Cruz's campaign emphasized that the candidate "will continue to compete vigorously to win" for the remainder of the primary season.

This strategy is believed to be a "last-ditch" effort to prevent Trump from clinching the GOP presidential nomination, according to CNN. Following a sweeping win in the New York primary last week, Trump seized a sizable share of the delegates, making it mathematically impossible for either Cruz or Kasich to earn the 1,237 delegates needed to become the nominee.

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"Preventing Trump from winning outright would force the front-runner to persuade additional delegates to his side on the convention floor to reach the magic number of 1,237," NBC News reports. "And a convention battle would give Cruz and Kasich the opportunity to wrangle delegates away as they become unbound in subsequent ballots."

Trump (and his campaign) responded to the strategy on Twitter late Sunday, calling the move desperate.

"Wow, just announced that Lyin' Ted and Kasich are going to collude in order to keep me from getting the Republican nomination," Trump wrote. "DESPERATION!"

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