Somehow, we don’t think a big night for Ted Cruz is what the #EventuallyTrump Republicans had in mind. How to we know? They told us over and over again:
Yes, they worry about what Trump might do downballot to the GOP if he is the nominee. But most view him with some mix of puzzlement and fascination. The Republican establishment saves its actual hatred for one man and one man only: Ted Cruz.
New York Times:
“We can live with Trump,” said Richard F. Hohlt, a veteran lobbyist, reflecting his colleagues’ sentiment at a Republican National Committee meeting last week in Charleston, S.C. “Do they all love Trump? No. But there’s a feeling that he is not going to layer over the party or install his own person. Whereas Cruz will have his own people there.”
New York Times:
“If he’s the nominee, we’re going to have wholesale losses in Congress and state offices and governors and legislatures,” said Mr. Dole, who served in the House and Senate for 35 years and won the Iowa caucuses twice. He described Mr. Cruz as having falsely “convinced the Iowa voters that he’s kind of a mainstream conservative.”
The only person who could stop Mr. Cruz from capturing the nomination? “I think it’s Trump,” Mr. Dole said, adding that Mr. Trump was “gaining a little.”
There is ample reason for Republican insiders to feel more affinity to the real estate mogul than to the brash Texas tea party senator. As Shirley noted, Washington has spent decades doing business with Trump, if not personally begging him for checks.
But, mainly, the reason that Republican leaders are moving toward Trump has nothing to do with him. They viscerally, unashamedly loathe Cruz.
A leading Republican pollster privately told Speaker Paul Ryan and his leadership team Sen. Ted Cruz would be the biggest drag on House Republicans should he win his party’s nomination, according to multiple sources who attended a small meeting of senior GOP lawmakers earlier this month.
During the gathering in Annapolis, Maryland, Dave Sackett of the Tarrance Group reviewed a recent poll he conducted for the National Republican Congressional Committee that described internal party data, including how voters feel about Donald Trump’s calls to temporarily bar Muslims from entering the U.S. and to deport undocumented immigrants.
Published: Mar 6, 2016