The “major announcement” from Texas Sen. Ted Cruz on Wednesday, April 27 has every appearance of a deciding factor. Steamrolled by his rival Donald Trump in the primaries for the Republican nomination organized the day before in five northeastern states, Mr. Cruz tried to disrupt the momentum that the real estate mogul currently enjoys by revealing the person chosen to appear on the possible “ticket” for the position of vice president — if he happens to receive the Republican nomination. It is the former CEO of Hewlett Packard, herself a candidate this year. Ms. Fiorina had given up her candidacy early after the New Hampshire primaries on Feb. 9. Mr. Cruz carefully chose the moment for the announcement to overshadow the foreign policy speech given a few hours earlier by the billionaire.
Mr. Trump’s campaign team immediately broadcast an excerpt from an interview of the only woman in the Republican race, in which the latter asserts that Mr. Cruz “just like any other politician … says whatever he needs to say to get elected.” An apparent ideological proximity had, however, led Ms. Fiorina to quickly support the senator after her withdrawal. Indeed, over the course of the campaign, she never stopped putting forward her conservative convictions, which are anti-abortion and anti-gay marriage, and also that her faith had enabled her, she says, to overcome personal trials — breast cancer, as well as the death of a stepdaughter at 35, lost to “the demons of addiction.”
A Week in Indiana
The former CEO of HP, aggressive in the Republican debates, had crucified Mr. Trump during the second televised confrontation following the billionaire’s derogatory comments about her looks. She also constitutes an asset in the face of the Democratic favorite, Hillary Clinton. Ms. Fiorina can point to her experience in business to counter that of Mr. Trump and her status as a newcomer to politics, as Republican voters have supported political outsiders this year. Finally, she is based in California, a strategic state that will vote at the beginning of June and where Mr. Cruz has not been favored to win.
Mr. Cruz’s unusually early announcement, however, betrays a nervousness less than a week away from a decisive vote in Indiana, a state that uses the winner-take-all rule, where the winner wins all the delegates. The Texas senator must absolutely win to prevent Mr. Trump from coming closer to the threshold of 1,237 delegates required to automatically receive the Republican Party nomination. Indeed, his only chance rests on the uncertainty of an “open” convention.
So far, the polls show a slight lead for the billionaire, who has stated that he is determined to carry the state. Mr. Cruz also reached an agreement with the third man in the Republican race, John Kasich, to allow him to carry out his activities unhindered in Indiana, in exchange for the same in New Mexico and Oregon. Mr. Trump, who considers the race already won, dryly referred to the announcement on Tuesday as “a waste of time.”
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