At first, it seemed like another random conspiracy theory. Then, it started making sense. Finally, after looking at the very specific words that the candidates (and former candidate) used, it became clear that this really might happen.
Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio versus Donald Trump and John Kasich. In an election with so much bad blood between all of the candidates, it’s hard on the surface to picture such deals happening. But, for the “betterment of the party,” this could very well be what happens. Here’s why:
- Both Rubio and Kasich adamantly deny the possibility of this every happening. They might as well say, “Read my lips, no new taxes,” or “I won’t become Speaker of the House.” They’re politicians. They can change their minds. More importantly, they’re savvy and both realize that their stock goes up at the convention if they’re NOT predisposed to getting the VP tap.
- They’re keeping their delegates for made up reasons. Rubio claims that he’s not releasing his delegates because he wants to stop a Trump nomination. Kasich claims he’s staying in the race because he can win. Both might be sincere. Either might be holding on for ambitious reasons. Either way, their delegates will play well towards their chances of getting a convention floor tap.
- When nobody gets to 1,237 before the convention, anything can happen. Deals will need to be made. Trump will probably act first on Kasich. When word reaches Cruz, he’ll either get to work on Rubio or (more likely) will have already made plans for such a contingency.
Neither Cruz nor Trump want to be forced into their VP pick. Both would probably prefer to have Nikki Haley. Cruz has a valid choice in Carly Fiorina already in his camp. Trump has said he wants experience. The pieces fit together nicely.
As with any puzzle, it’s possible to force the wrong pieces together. Physically, they can be forced to fit, but the picture would be wrong. This particular picture makes for great political drama, but it could end up causing more of a division in the party than the one that’s already brewing.