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Presidential Horse Race 2016: WWTCD (What would Ted Cruz Do) about #NeverTrump?

Without a doubt, one of the most fascinating aspects of the 2016 Republican presidential nomination cycle has been Americans’ reaction to Donald Trump.

We all know about the people who love Trump. They’re enthusiastic, passionate, furious, sometimes unpredictable and volatile at times. Trump didn’t draw tens of thousands to his events for nothing – he’s much more than just the cult of personality. He’s tapped into intense anti-establishment anger that’s been festering in Ted Cruzthe grassroots for years.

And then there are those who can’t stand Trump and complained about, dismissed and opposed his candidacy almost from the beginning. Eventually this group hardened into vowing to never support Trump under any circumstances. Some are establishmentarians; some Ted Cruz supporters and some supported other candidates.

The only thing they have in common is their animosity towards The Donald and the fact their endeavor didn’t work. Trump won. Now what?

After explaining why he felt the #NeverTrump movement failed to stop Trump, W. James Antle III of the Washington Examiner concludes, “Idealists deserve credit for being sincere in their convictions, at least. Some of the last-ditch anti-Trump efforts seemed less like real attempts to defeat the billionaire than the equivalent of affixing a ‘Don't blame me, I voted for Harold Stassen’ bumper sticker on your car.

“Anti-Trump Republicans aren't likely to give up their opposition to a candidate they not only disagree with on important issues but regard as uniquely unqualified to be president. While trying to minimize conservative votes and endorsements for Trump, they now need to convince fewer Republicans than they did in the primaries to have a real impact.”

I must confess at times I’ve considered joining the #NeverTrump movement for a number of reasons, not the least of which is heartily disagreeing with the candidate on the way he treated his fellow competitors in debates and on the stump.

I understand the need for an entertainer to put on a good show, but the “Lyin’ Ted” mantra was excessive and vitriolic – and false to boot.

But I also never quite understood why the #NeverTrump people claimed real conservatives didn’t support Trump when exit poll after exit poll in state after state showed Trump either winning or competitive with Cruz for the votes of the most conservative people and Tea Partiers. Evangelicals also favored Trump and his most ardent detractors couldn’t explain why.

The answer is actually pretty simple. Instead of focusing on ideology, issue positions or even behavior, this was a primary season about who was seen as the most anti-establishment “outsider” candidate. From very early on last summer – say, shortly after the first debate – polls showed the “outsider” candidates getting at least 60 percent of the support. Some surveys had it higher than 70 percent.

It doesn’t take a genius to figure out the voters were looking for someone “outside” the system to break the stranglehold the establishment has on both parties in Washington. You can see it to some extent with the Democrats’ support of Bernie Sanders, though he’s not really an “outsider.” But his message sure is.

Once Trump succeeded in labeling Cruz as a “politician” and part of Washington -- and the people believed it -- the race was over. The tipping point occurred about a month ago, especially after the Colorado convention.

The great weight of evidence may contradict the Trump-ian assertion that Cruz is a creature of politics, but the voters sure bought it. Just listen to the callers on talk radio – they took Trump’s depiction of Ted and ran with it like a fish grabs the bait and dives for the bottom.

And now that Trump has won, there’s nowhere for the anti-Trump people to go.

Running what the #NeverTrump people see as a third party conservative candidate (or wait until 2020) can’t possibly work because many of the conservatives whose support would be needed to have such a person succeed are Trump backers already.

I don’t want to be too quick to criticize the #NeverTrump folks because I respect, admire and agree with them on most issues, but to take such an unrelenting stand just doesn’t make sense in the face of what’s going on in the world today. There are daunting problems in this country and around the world that cannot be dealt with by sitting on the sidelines.

Donald Trump may not be the one to “solve” these issues, but we know for sure Hillary Clinton isn’t the right one to do it. That’s getting half the equation correct from the start.

Conservatives may not embrace Trump’s candidacy but that doesn’t mean we can’t maintain our own identities and work with him within his administration to combat the growth of government and fight terrorism. Are you seriously willing to leave that task to Hillary Clinton, Huma Abedin and the gaggle of socialists that make up the Democrat Party?

I didn’t care much for Mitt Romney or John McCain as candidates either, yet in an either/or American political system, you go with who is the best possible candidate, no matter how vile you might consider them personally.

Every single one of us has voted for candidates in the past that we didn’t like. It’s like losing a baseball game because of a bad umpire call. Sometimes you’ve just got to shake the other team’s hand and go home knowing in your heart what the real result should have been.

Lastly on #NeverTrump, I personally know non-establishment conservatives that the Trump campaign has reached out to, looking for them to join the effort to elect him. Putting two-and-two together, this means the campaign – and likely the future administration – is open to bringing in conservatives to work on policy and run the government.

As Richard Viguerie often says, personnel is policy. It’s early, but Trump is making the right overtures now.

I’m not asking #NeverTrumpers to abandon their principles. But I do think they should at least be open to changing their minds down the road…after all, never is a long time, folks.

(WWTCD?) What would Ted Cruz do?

Speaking of #NeverTrump, time will tell how Ted Cruz decides to handle the Trump-as-nominee situation.

If there’s one person in America who deserves a say on whether Trump should or should not be president, it’s Cruz. The sheer amount of personal attacks and outright character assassination that Cruz and his family was forced to endure at the hands of Trump would make it difficult to want to be in the same room with the guy again, much less endorse him.

Alexander Bolton of The Hill reports, “What would normally be a routine political formality has been turned into a 50-50 proposition by Trump’s pointedly personal attacks on the Cruz and his family, say his staunchest allies.

“Cruz’s campaign on Wednesday refused to speculate on an endorsement. In his own concession speech on Tuesday night, Cruz didn’t even mention Trump.”

Bolton went on to share the views of several people familiar with Cruz who aren’t exactly sure what he’ll do. Some think Ted will make a decision based on what’s best for his political future or even in exchange for a promise to nominate him to the Supreme Court.

I think whatever Cruz decides to do, it will be what he feels is best for the country, not himself or his professional future. No matter how his many enemies tried to paint him, Ted was all about the Constitution and the American ideal first. Far from the ambitious politician some of his rivals (including Trump) tried to claim that he was, Cruz never acted like he was entitled to anyone’s support or to the nomination itself.

Cruz campaigned like the person he is. When he prayed, it was genuine, since there are many anecdotal stories of him praying when no one was around to notice.

My feeling is Cruz will ultimately take the high road and back Trump as the Republican nominee. Wounds do take time to heal, so I doubt any announcement will be forthcoming soon. But most conservatives, Cruz included, realize the utter destruction Hillary Clinton will inflict on the country, irreversible damage that will survive for generations.

If you don’t believe it, just look at the justice and court systems today under Obama appointees.

Cruz knows there’s no guarantee Trump will be much better than Hillary in any respect. But at least he’d have a say in the outcome, if only from his position in the Senate. I guess we’ll just have to wait and see what he decides.

Rush Limbaugh sees a future with Trump in the White House

Even though many in the conservative movement are still trying to figure out where they stand on Trump, others are having no trouble in choosing to get behind him.

Radio host Rush Limbaugh did a pretty good job of staying neutral all throughout the primary campaign season, but now that the Republican in-fighting is behind us…mostly…he’s happy to tell the world how he sees the general election playing out.

Hint: It isn’t pretty for Hillary Clinton.

Limbaugh said Wednesday on his show, “Let me give you one little thing: My instinctive feeling right now is that Trump is gonna win, beat Hillary badly, that it could be landslide proportions…

“You add up people supporting Bernie Sanders to people supporting Donald Trump, and the people that supported Ted Cruz.

“You add up those voters -- and if they all vote, too, Hillary Clinton doesn't have a prayer.  I don't care about the Electoral College. I don't care about anything else. Just like in terms of the people that are fed up with Washington and the establishment, as we sit here today, she is the lone candidate representing what obviously so many Americans, Republicans and Democrats for their own reasons right now happen to despise.  She's losing the vote in every state, and yet the Democrats expect her to triumph.  Where is her momentum?”

Limbaugh basically articulates what the #NeverTrump doom forecasters are missing – the fact that although Trump may not be personally liked by a large swath of the population, he represents something that the equally personally reviled Hillary Clinton can never be: an “outsider.”

I’m not saying all of the Bernie Sanders voters are going to flock to Trump, but some of them will. Hillary Clinton is the poster child for systematic corruption that American voters are rejecting in droves this year – towards Trump on the Republican side and Sanders for the Democrats.

Hillary = Washington. Americans hate Washington. Americans therefore will reject Hillary.

I won’t be as bold as Limbaugh in predicting a landslide victory for Trump. The Democrat machine will make sure the election tilts as far to their side as possible. But I will say I don’t buy all this “Trump will lose big” talk either.

It just doesn’t fit the American mood right now.

Paul Ryan’s wavering on whether to support Trump

Finally this week, just because Donald Trump is now the only candidate left in the Republican field and the presumptive party nominee doesn’t mean the establishment is ready to embrace him.

As a prime example, Speaker Paul Ryan said yesterday that he couldn’t back Trump right now.

Nolan D. McCaskill of Politico reports, “U.S. House Speaker Paul Ryan said on Thursday that he cannot currently support Donald Trump, the Republican presumptive nominee, complicating Trump’s efforts to unite the GOP around him.

“’Well, to be perfectly candid with you, I’m just not ready to do that at this point,’ Ryan told CNN's Jake Tapper. ‘I’m not there right now. And I hope to, though, and I want to. But I think what is required is that we unify this party, and I think the bulk of the burden on unifying the party will have to come from our presumptive nominee.’”

I bet Ted Cruz is glad he decided to suspend his campaign on Tuesday. As soon as the grassroots hears that the Speaker of the do-nothing House is hedging on an endorsement, Trump will receive another huge boost in support.

The establishment will play these cat and mouse games with Trump hoping to get what they want, but I wouldn’t hold my breath if I were them on getting Trump to comply. The Donald has made it clear over the course of the past year that he’s not going to act according to someone else’s rules.

His “act” comes along with his candidacy. Ryan and the rest of the establishment had better get used to it.

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Ted Cruz and Donald Trump

I don't know if Ted Cruz will ever accept a Olive Branch from Donald Trump, but if he can obtain a slot in his administration, he'd be cutting off his nose to spite his face by refusing it. As much as Trump offended Cruz, Cruz gave back the offenses to Trump with equal candor. Cruz said Trump would impose the largest tax increase in history. ..fact check..no his tax proposal, even if altered, would lower taxes significantly from what they are now. He stretched the truth a mite there. Cruz denied he had anything to do with Melania pictures passed out to people in Utah...funny thing is the PAC had the same PO Box as the Fiorina PAC and we all know Fiorina was his VP pick, just to name a few.
We won't go into the Rafael Cruz/Lee Harvey Oswald connection because it is classified information that Cruz may have been working for the CIA, which may explain the rather abrupt exit from the race after Indiana loss from Ted Cruz.
If Cruz doesn't try to unify the party, he'll be helping Hillary..end of story.
My message to Ted Cruz...to err is human, to forgive Divine...you're the one claiming to be a staunch Christian, and Jesus Message is "Love your enemies, do good to those who persecute you, and forgive your enemies, if you wish the Father to forgive you for your sins." Incendiary speech by Levin needs to stop also..bad sportsmanship.

BREAKING NEWS!!!

Ted Cruz is not Jesus!

Ted Cruz is not the Messiah!

The headline for your column is EXACTLY why people did NOT vote for Ted Cruz. His daddy, his wife, and himself presented him as the Messiah come to save the nation.

That is not constitutional.

That is not biblical.

It is offensive. To the highest degree.

That is why Cruz lost the South. Why he lost Evangelicals everywhere.

The President of the United States is NOT the spiritual leader of the people.

That neither Mr. Viguerie nor the editors of this site can see that WWTCD is offensive shows your utter deception by this man and his campaign.

Do NOT look to any political leader as the savior of the nation.

The Founders would be rolling around in their graves to see Ted Cruz's religious campaign. And the support of anyone for it.

Again, it is unconstitutional and unbiblical. Epic Fail.

I hope this site can once again get itself back on track ...

However the current headline that declares it is ALL on Trump to create unity in the party is WOEFULLY WARPED and misguided.

Trump didn't start the #NeverTrump campaign.

Please, editors, take a vacation. Get away. And come back when you are not blinded by the messianic message of Ted Cruz.

WWTCD?

Principles matter. They guide your philosophies and decisions. Trump has not made the case at all. He is also moving more and more to the left. Too many people that support him take everything he says and "explains" it, watering it down to "Here's what he's really saying....here's why he said it." They have no idea that Trump will hold a conservative line that will help this nation. I also strongly question anyone that uses flagrant lies, deceitful lies to secure a nomination whether I can trust this candidate when he's in office and I daresay no. Trump has not made the case. There is very little difference between his philosophies and the democrats' philosophies of which he has strongly supported for years. I have sucked it up for the "Team's" sake for my entire voting career and with each passing election, the nominees are getting worse, not better and the government is encroaching on our lives so much now, they are in our homes. And this election is going to be for 8 years...and that is too long. Enough is enough. Trump is going to have to make the case and he hasn't.

"It’s early, but Trump is

"It’s early, but Trump is making the right overtures now."

Jeffery, what gives you the idea trump is making the right overtures now? He's changing his views again on minimum wage, his tax plan, defending his personal attacks and lies, and basically telling those Republicans who don't jump on his band wagon to go to hell, no attempt at unity at all.

It's Early butbTrump is

You're obviously a Mark Levin fan...Trump didn't and hasn't changed his tax plan, nor did he raise the minimum wage, but stated the tax plan, which lowers taxes to everyone, may get altered in Congress, but still will remain lower than present tax scale, and that raising minimum wage should be left to the states, as $7.25 is a very low wage, but made it clear that each state can remedy it accordingly.Keep the Faith OK?