“Ted Cruz took a victory lap Thursday following a strong fundraising report, repeatedly telling supporters on a phone call that he expects the race to be over by March — but only after getting through an increasingly nasty run-up to the Iowa caucuses.”
The political attacks, he warned, will get “uglier and uglier and uglier.”
“Still, Cruz observed at several points during the call that he expects that the race will finish well before the end of the primary season in June, saying “there’s a very good possibility that the Republican primary will be decided by the end of March.”
“The call came one day after the Texas senator’s campaign announced he had raised around $20 million in the last three months of the year, an impressive haul that adds to his momentum in Iowa, where he leads in recent polls.”
“I want to encourage everyone to get ready, because starting tomorrow morning, we are in a 90-day sprint to win this nomination, and then to turn around and win the general election,” he said. “To defeat Hillary Clinton in November of 2016 and to turn this country around.”
He may be a little optimistic here; he seems to be presuming that he will take Iowa and Trump will fade elsewhere. But the main target for a Trump Democrat is no Marco Rubio for the GOP nomination-this assumes that it’s Rubio or bus for the Establishment.
So let’s unpack Cruz-what are his assumptions here? It’s interesting, they are assuming that Cruz will be the Establishment candidate. That the Establishment will coalesce around Cruz as the only viable alternative to Trump.
“Cruz is widely expected to be among the top two finishers in the Feb. 1 Iowa caucuses, with many activists and operatives saying he looks on track to win it outright. His front-runner status has led to a growing number of attacks from rival campaigns and other outside groups, leading him to reassure supporters Thursday that it was better to be attacked than ignored.”
“There’s an old line, if you’re not taking flak, you’re not over the target,” he said. “If we were sitting here on Dec. 31 and no one was attacking us and no one was going to be attacking us, I would be deeply, deeply concerned because it would mean we weren’t winning.”
“Cruz continues to trail behind Donald Trump in national polls.”
His political director, Mark Campbell, asserted, “The other thing we’re really watching with great fascination is how more and more of the establishment wing of the Republican Party is coming to our campaign as the alternative to Mr. Trump. We wish Donald Trump a happy New Year and hope he had a wonderful holiday season, but all of us believe very firmly that Ted Cruz will be the next President of the United States.”
Read more: http://www.politico.com/story/2015/12/ted-cruz-gop-race-ends-march-217260#ixzz3vwD7xB6e
You have to admit these guys have a deft way of wishing someone a happy New Year. And I suppose that in terms of what a traditional GOP candidate is supposed to look like, Cruz most resembles that in terms of organization and money.
True he’d normally be too conservative, too much a creature of the religious Right to get the nomination. But this is not normal times as everyone but Nate Silver seems to get.
But if you compare him to Rick Santorum back in 2012 the big difference was that Santorum won Iowa but had no organization beyond the state.
So Cruz looks like the most normal frontrunner. So he owes a lot to Trump-Cruz is literally the most unpopular person in Washington, and probably the most unpopular Republican among his own party. But thanks to Trump, maybe the GOP grins and bears going with Cruz.
So this would be as close to how things traditionally work in a GOP primary, with the little proviso that nothing this year in the GOP and especially the primary is at all going like it does traditionally.