Thursday, April 28, 2016

Ted Cruz and John Kasich continue their clumsy dance. Or do they?

Maybe Ted Cruz and John Kasich are playing by "Fight Club" rules?

If you've read the Chuck Palahniuk novel or seen the David Fincher film, you're familiar with the first two.

1. You do not talk about Fight Club.

2. You do not talk about Fight Club.

This seems to be the philosophy that was intended to govern the unusual alliance between Cruz and Kasich, Republican presidential rivals united in their desperation to stop Donald Trump.

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Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Can Ted Cruz and Carly Fiorina go the distance? The pros and cons of an early VP choice

Texas Sen. Ted Cruz made the strangest presidential race even stranger Wednesday by introducing Carly Fiorina as his running mate-in-waiting.

The in-waiting part is key. It's not yet May. The Republican National Convention in Cleveland, where a Cruz-Fiorina ticket would have to be ratified, is more than 80 days away.

Oh, and there's that minor issue of being 675 delegates shy of the total needed to clinch the nomination. It takes 1,237. Cruz isn't even halfway there, according to the Associated Press. And he won't be before the convention.

But this is the year when everything you once thought impossible is possible.

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Monday, April 25, 2016

On their first day aligned against Donald Trump, John Kasich and Ted Cruz send mixed messages

McKEES ROCKS, Pa. – John Kasich's campaign began the week with a new lease on life.

But as the Ohio governor and Republican presidential hopeful ended his day here Monday near his boyhood home, it seemed little had changed. And there were many mixed signals about the alliance he and Ted Cruz formed to block Donald Trump's path to the nomination.

Under a pact announced late Sunday, Kasich is expected to cede Indiana's May 3 primary to Cruz. In exchange, the Texas senator is to stand down in New Mexico and Oregon.

On that much, the rival candidates have agreed.

How to describe the strategy – and how, exactly, to execute it – is an entirely different story.

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Monday, April 18, 2016

John Kasich faces flimsy attacks from Ted Cruz: Gamesmanship or dirty politics?

As Republicans prepare for an open convention this summer in Cleveland, it's getting tougher to tell the difference between gamesmanship and dirty tricks.

Especially if you're John Kasich.

The Ohio governor is stuck in last place in the GOP presidential field. But his two remaining rivals sure seem to be worried about him. New York businessman Donald Trump and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz both have sought to derail Kasich's candidacy -- occasionally in false or misleading ways.

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Monday, April 11, 2016

No, John Kasich is not angling to be Donald Trump's vice president

If John Kasich really wants to be Donald Trump's vice president, there are easier ways than disparaging the real estate mogul's grasp of foreign policy.

Keep that in mind as Ted Cruz backers grumble about how Kasich and Trump blocked Cruz's Michigan delegates from key committees at this summer's Republican National Convention.

The move has led to speculation, encouraged by Cruz's aides and advisers, that Kasich is currying favor with Trump in hopes of scoring the No. 2 spot on the GOP ticket.

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Thursday, April 7, 2016

Here's how John Kasich's team pitched supporters on his prospects at a contested convention

Key advisers to John Kasich's presidential campaign briefed supporters this week on their strategy to win a contested Republican convention here this summer.

The plan, shared at a closed-door meeting Wednesday in Washington, rests on the Ohio governor's high favorability ratings, his lead over Democrat Hillary Clinton in early general election polls, and on his ability to convert delegates on later ballots.

"After the first two ballots, most delegates are released from their obligation to vote for a specific candidate," reads a slide from the Kasich campaign's PowerPoint presentation, shared Thursday with by a person who attended the gathering.

"Republican delegates are predominantly grassroots activists, local party officials, and elected officials. Governor Kasich is the only candidate that is left on the stage that has crossover appeal to all factions of the party. Everyone else will be carrying deep battle scars into Cleveland. Governor Kasich will be able to bring different factions together where others can't."

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