Erick Erickson just came out with a great piece. Clearly a deal is in place.
Jeb Bush has a private meeting with Kasich, Cruz, and Rubio.
Cruz’s campaign, after a lot of bluster about going all in in Florida admits it was all a head fake. They had one event scheduled for today with Sean Hannity in Orlando that was previously scheduled and will be nationally focused, not Florida focused. Then Cruz is bailing on Florida. For the Rubio folks complaining, I’m told the campaign did try to make adjustments, but couldn’t for reasons not in the campaign’s control.
Cruz’s campaign takes down its Florida ads. The Cruz Super PACs follow suit allegedly — at least some of them have signaled they too are getting out.
Marco Rubio revs up his Florida presence and is nowhere to be found in Illinois, Missouri, and North Carolina.
The Cruz campaign redirects all its resources to those three states, with Cruz rallies, ad buys, GOTV etc.
Now Rubio’s spokesman goes on national television and says Rubio supporters should vote for John Kasich in Ohio.
Kasich is going all in in Ohio and ceding Illinois, Missouri, and North Carolina to Cruz. In fact, Kasich suddenly has no events in Illinois, and only one event in Pennsylvania after the Ohio primary.
In other words, Kasich is now only campaigning in Ohio; Rubio is only campaigning in Florida; and Cruz is avoiding events in Florida and Ohio.
There is clearly a plan to stop Trump.
Will Rubio and Kasich win their home states and then drop out to back Cruz? For the Cruz campaign to willingly back off in Florida and Ohio, it would seem this might be the case.
Another possibility is that the Cruz campaign has recognized that they cannot beat Trump if he wins the 165 delegates from Florida and Ohio — remember, these are winner-take-all states — so this is a temporary strategy to prevent Trump from gaining an insurmountable delegate lead.
Either way, it appears the anti-Trump coordination may finally be happening. We’ll see if it works.
Jon Schweppe is Communications Director for the American Principles Project.