Does Fiorina make you like Cruz any better?

Carly Fiorina campaigning in Columbia, May 2015

Carly Fiorina campaigning in Columbia, May 2015. Hey, there’s Emile DeFelice behind her!

It doesn’t me. But it doesn’t make me like him any less, either.

In calling this to my attention, Jeff Mobley called it a “Hail Mary.” Which may be apt. Or is he “calling an audible?” I don’t know; I’m not a master of sports analogies.

Anyway, here’s the news before it happens:

Ted Cruz will announce Wednesday that Carly Fiorina will be his vice presidential nominee if he’s the Republican Party’s pick for president, according to three sources with knowledge of the announcement.

Fiorina, a former Hewlett-Packard CEO, has been among Cruz’s most loyal and active surrogates since she ended her own 2016 GOP presidential bid after a poor finish in New Hampshire in February.

The Cruz campaign deliberated over whether to pick Fiorina for the last two weeks, according to one person familiar with the move. It has polled the potential ticket, examining it for its prospective strengths and weaknesses.

The hope within the campaign is that Fiorina will help Cruz in California, which will award 172 delegates on June 7. Fiorina is scheduled to give the keynote address at this weekend’s California Republican Party convention, speaking hours after Cruz takes the stage.

The move comes at a time of growing desperation within Cruz circles. Some in the campaign worry that the Texas senator will lose Indiana on Tuesday and lose other key states in May, paving the way for a Trump nomination….

52 thoughts on “Does Fiorina make you like Cruz any better?

    1. Jeff Mobley

      Maybe we could call it, “The Resistance” (disclaimer: I recently got the new STAR WARS movie on Blu-ray).

    1. Brad Warthen Post author

      Or not, since even I had to look up that reference.

      I don’t think I paid much attention to Reagan in ’76. I was more focused on the Democratic side, hoping my man Jimmy Carter would make it.

      To the extent I thought about the GOP nomination process (note that I was a newly minted copy editor fresh out of college, learning the production side of newspapers, and not a political writer or editor), I just assumed they would stick with Ford. I saw the Reagan insurgency as rather ridiculous; of COURSE the incumbent should get his own party’s nomination. Besides, I liked Ford, just not as much as Carter…

      1. Phillip

        I was a 15-year-old at music camp in northern Michigan for 8 weeks summer of 1976, and they had copies of the Detroit Free Press and Grand Rapids papers lying around all summer, so naturally there was tons of coverage of all things relating to Gerald Ford, the nomination race with Reagan, etc…that name (Schweiker) just stuck in my mind and I never forgot it. The only thing that got more ink in Michigan that summer than the GOP race was the Bicentennial celebration and the magical summer of Mark Fidrych for the Detroit Tigers. I can’t remember the name of somebody I met two days ago but Richard Schweiker sticks in my brain. Go figure.

        1. Doug Ross

          “Mark Fidrych for the Detroit Tigers.”

          The Bird! He owned that summer. He was a local kid from the area I grew up in outside Worcester, Ma. Googling him and see that he died in 2009. I think I knew that. This nugget was too good to not share:

          “On May 31 and June 5, in his third and fourth career starts, Fidrych earned 11-inning complete game wins. ”

          22 innings in two games!

          1. Bryan Caskey

            “On May 31 and June 5, in his third and fourth career starts, Fidrych earned 11-inning complete game wins. ”

            22 innings in two games!

            Wow. That was back in the day when starting pitchers weren’t coddled like they are now.

      2. bud

        Spent the Fourth of July weekend of 1976 camped on the Potomac River across from the Mall. That was pretty cool.

      3. Scout

        That was the first presidential election I have any recollection of. I was 6. My grandparents were for Ford and My Parents were for Carter. My brother and I decided to go for Ford just as a sort of rebellion, because you know Grandparents are the best. They always have marshmallows in the drawer in the kitchen, for example. If I’d been a grown up, I suspect I would have really been for Carter though.

  1. Claus

    When does Lindsey Graham announce his running mate? They both have about the same chance of getting the nomination now.

  2. Doug Ross

    Strategically, it’s as you stated, a Hail Mary. I’m not quite sure what he hopes to accomplish. Even if he wins California, he’s going to be way behind Trump. She’s a good pick for him demographically but I don’t think it helps from an experience standpoint. Cruz needed a Biden type.

    Although this does also signal the end of John Kasich’s national political career. The VP slot under Cruz was just about his last hope. I’d love to know if Cruz offered it to him first.

    What’s next? Challenge Trump to mud wrestle?

    1. Brad Warthen Post author

      No, I don’t think he offered it to Kasich — and if he had, Kasich would have been right to turn it down. That would really be an upside-down ticket. Kasich is MUCH better-qualified.

      This has apparently developing since early March…

      1. Doug Ross

        “Kasich is MUCH better-qualified.”

        You do stick to a narrative, I’ll give you that. Only 80-90% of the country disagrees with you. It’s the same scenario as Obama/Biden. The top of the ticket has to be more than qualified. He has to project leadership. Kasich is a grinder, not a leader.

        He’s Vincent Sheheen 2016. Nice guy, family man, wonky, dull. Doesn’t project any sense of charisma or ability to motivate people.

        1. Brad Warthen

          I stick to facts. Kasich’s accomplishments are considerable; Cruz has nothing to show for his time in office.

          That most GOP primary voters disagree means zilch. They’ve shown repeatedly that they care nothing for facts.

          1. Doug Ross

            Considerable? Nobody outside of Ohio knew who he was a year ago. He’s had all that time to toot his achievements. And the voters yawned.

          2. bud

            Brad I might have agreed with you a week ago. But then he (Kasich) inexplicably made the absolute dumbest statement I have ever heard out of a politicians mouth. And that covers a lot of ground. Why on earth did he agree to a deal with Cruz to concede Indiana in exchange for Oregon and NM then turn around the very next day and say his supporters should still vote for him in Indiana. WTF! You beg your people to vote for Cruz. This is the time for extreme measures if you have any hope of getting the nomination. What tiny, itty bitty sliver of hope you have hinges on someone other than Trump winning Indiana. And Kasich cannot be that guy. So by encouraging people to vote for himself he’s helping Trump. So you throw the Hail Mary with all you have and then hope. Instead Kasich agrees to throw the Hail Mary then instead lofts the ball gently into the flat. May as well go ahead and punt.

            1. Brad Warthen Post author

              I’m very curious about how that “pact” came about. It seems to have been ironed out not between the candidates, but between some of their staff people.

              And from his comments, I speculate that Kasich was never entirely on board with what they negotiated in his name…

              1. Doug Ross

                “And from his comments, I speculate that Kasich was never entirely on board with what they negotiated in his name…”

                That’s not very presidential behavior, is it?

              2. Bryan Caskey

                Well, then Kasich is a moron.

                Kasich needs someone other than Trump to win Indiana. His hopes rest solely on a contested convention, and a contested convention requires someone other than Trump to win Indiana.

                1. Doug Ross

                  I don’t think he’s stupid. Just gullible when fed bad advice by consultants who need the checks to keep coming in. “You’ll be President, John!! You’re the best! !”

                  1. Bryan Caskey

                    All I’m saying is that Kasich would be a fool to take any action that leads to Trump winning Indiana. If Trump gets to 1237, then it’s game over.

  3. Mark Stewart

    I’ve never liked Joe Biden so much. Where are you, Joe?

    Only path out of this is to have Hillary get indicted before the Democrat’s convention and someone convinces Joe to step in. Absent that, the stock market – and entire country – is going to take one heck of a beating come late summer.

  4. Bryan Caskey

    Now that Cruz has announced his VP, Kasich should announce his VP pick as well. You know, someone who really energizes all 4 of the Kasich supporters. Someone like George Pataki.

  5. Juan Caruso

    “Ted Cruz Might Beat Hillary Clinton; Donald Trump Won’t.”
    We may never know the outcome of either match because Hillary’s health is failing. Sen. Graham ended his senseless campaign last December because he knew the inside scoop was either indictment or infirmity and either way she could not appoint him Secretary of Defense.

  6. Juan Caruso

    Fiorina cannot salve the general public’ sopinion of Cruz. Her selection is based upon the far-fetched notion of how well she may tarnish Hillary. If Fiorina attacks Hillary too soon, the public will wonder why presidential candidate Cruz, a highly esteemed attorney, allowed UCLA Law School dropout Fiorina to take on his opponent. – Can’t Cruz take Hillary’s heat himself? The public will decide he probably cannot.

    Unleashing Fiorina after the nominating convention, on the other hand, requires incredible suspension of disbelief.

    Many of Cruz’s own tactics have backfired on his campaign. Elected lawyers should do what they are very good at doing and delegate the rest to people with successful practical experience.

    1. Mark Stewart

      No one has ever claimed Cruz was a very good attorney, right?

      Law clerck maybe, but not an actual attorney. He doesn’t have the people skills.

  7. bud

    Given the exceptionally large margin of victory Trump ran up in yesterdays voting I’m wondering if Democrats somehow infiltrated the the GOP primaries in order to help Trump win. Pretty savvy strategy if so. But I doubt Democrats are ruthless enough to do something like that.

    1. Brad Warthen Post author

      No, it wouldn’t be savvy. It would be reckless and inexcusable — risking the fate of the country for the possibility of short-term gain for a party.

      Anyone who votes for Trump under any circumstances for any reason is making it more, not less, likely that he will become president of the United States.

      And if that doesn’t send chills down your spine, then we’re probably better off if you just stay home and not vote…

      1. Doug Ross

        “risking the fate of the country”

        Similar sentiments were expressed by people opposed to Obama, Bush, Reagan… it’s never going to be as bad (or as good) as you think it will be.

        1. Brad Warthen Post author

          Doug, you’ve always got people — members of the opposite party — saying outrageous things about candidates.

          I’m not responsible for what such people say. They are full of it.

          This is a dramatically, qualitatively, unique situation. No one as clueless and as unhinged as Donald Trump has gotten this close to the White House in my lifetime for sure, and probably not in the nation’s history (I’ll have to think for a bit on whether we ever dodged a bullet like this before my lifetime).

          I just don’t know what to say to anyone who doesn’t realize that Donald Trump being the nominee of a major party would be extraordinarily dangerous.

          If you don’t see it, and can actually assert that he’s just like Obama, Bush or Reagan, then I just don’t know where to start. (And I say that as someone who really, really had a low opinion of Reagan at the time. But now, compared to Trump, he looks like a dream candidate.)

          I’ll direct you to some others who have tried to explain it. Here’s an editorial in the Post today, “Why Republicans still must not rally around Trump.

          I’ll also direct you to this. It probably won’t do any good, since you hold foreign policy expertise in contempt, but it’s the letter that 100 Republican foreign policy professionals signed explaining why, as one of them put it, the “unique horror of Donald Trump’s foreign policy” is so unthinkable.

          1. bud

            Brad, for some inexplicable reason you don’t seem to find George W. Bush to be all that horrible of a president. That’s the standard by which we would be comparing Trump or Cruz to. The horror and disgust I felt with the American voters for putting that mendacious, incompetent fool back into office is palpable. And his 2nd term was beyond anything in my lifetime for sheer incompetency in the White House. So frankly I find this comment pretty laughable: “No one as clueless and as unhinged as Donald Trump has gotten this close to the White House in my lifetime” My heavens man Bush lied us into a disastrous war. That is a really, really disgusting thing to do. And it has cost us dearly in so many ways. For one It served as the catalyst for ISIS. If you could appreciate just what a horrible decision that really was then you’d be a little less strident in voicing such nonsense.

            Look, I don’t think Trump would be a successful president. But he would surround himself with sensible people and would likely do ok. He’s actually said some rather sensible things of late. He’s suggested we get out of NATO. I’ve been saying that for years. He’s also in favor of withdrawing some of our forces unless the host nations pay the tab. Not sure why that’s so radical. He’d let the Russians deal with the Syrian issue. Let em have at it. Ok, the whole wall thing is nonsense. And he’s pretty much a pig when it comes to women, Latinos and a host of others. But all in all he doesn’t make me cringe nearly as much as W. That man is simply the worst president in me lifetime by a very wide margin. Trump has a low bar to get under. And maybe he will. But since I don’t think he can beat Hillary I’m fine with him winning the GOP nomination.

            1. Bryan Caskey

              “He’s suggested we get out of NATO. I’ve been saying that for years.”

              Sure. Let’s abandon Europe. That sounds like a super-great idea. Then the US would have even LESS leverage throughout the world to project our evil, imperialistic plans. While we’re at it, we should let our treaty to defend Japan lapse and give up all our bases there. I’m sure that Japan re-arming itself against China would be super-duper stable. It’s not like the Chinese and Japanese are sworn enemies or anything.

            2. Bob Amundson

              Military intervention in Syria is not a good idea, but the U.S. must stop putting our “head in the sand” regarding the refugee crisis. Half of Syria’s population is now either an internally displaced person (IDP) or a refugee. The international community is still struggling to respond to this humanitarian catastrophe, now in its sixth year. I want our next president to recognize this crisis, to lead the call for burden sharing and international solidarity. “Give me your tired, your poor …”

            3. Brad Warthen Post author

              “My heavens man Bush lied us into a disastrous war.”

              Except that, of course, he didn’t. But Trump would, in a skinny minute. Lying is something he does all day long.

              More than seven years after he left office, you still have a terrible case of Bush Derangement Syndrome. It keeps you from seeing the night-and-day difference between people who fit within the broad postwar consensus on foreign policy and a dangerous, fascistic egomaniac who doesn’t have a CLUE about the world, and who indicates daily that he would govern by the bizarre whim of the moment.

              1. Brad Warthen Post author

                Of all the inexplicable political behavior I’ve seen the past year, the most amazing is when I see people who have every reason to be appalled by Trump assert that he’s no worse than other people they’ve seen who they don’t like.

                As though this were just another year, in which all that matters is that their preferred party wins.

                Let me tell you: Which party wins never matters. But this year, thinking it does requires a dangerous sort of myopia.

                Sane, responsible Democrats who care about their country need to hope with all their might that Trump is not nominated.

                And sane, responsible Republicans who care about their country need to plan on voting for the Democrat if he IS.

                This just goes SO far beyond the stupid games parties play…

                1. bud

                  Let me try one more time. I don’t regard myself as a Democrat but rather as a liberal. I find many of the positions taken by the Democratic party to be incorrect. But I view the Republican party as dangerous and completely at odds with the values I hold dear. I find their approach to governance destructive to the middle class and the working class as a means of enriching a tiny handful of very rich Americans very distasteful. I also find their war mongering utterly disgusting. This PARTY is bad for America and as such should be neutered so that it cannot damage the country the way it has for the last 35 years whenever it’s had the power. In other words there is a very, very big difference between the parties that goes beyond one man. That is a view you don’t share, and I respect that, but still find to be wrong.

                  By supporting Trump’s nomination I understand there is a risk. He’s every bit as terrible as you say he is. But a Kasich nomination carries far greater risk. First of all he has a better chance of winning. Second, with Kasich at the top of the ticket down ticket candidates would stand a better chance of winning. I think it would be terrible for the country if the GOP controlled everything. As evidence of that I point to the 2002-2006 period.

                  So to me it comes down to a matter of some risk/big reward. Trump is not likely to win the presidency in the fall. If he does there is some chance he’ll be worse than W but he probably wouldn’t. He could also turn out ok like Bush Sr. Frankly I never saw the catastrophe of W in 2000 so we really don’t know. All in all that is a chance I’m willing to take. Therefore I support, without apology, Trump to head the GOP.

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