Nate Jackson / May 2, 2016

Hoosier State Hectoring

Was Boehner “auditioning to be Donald Trump’s vice president”?

The all-important Indiana primary is Tuesday, and that means the presidential candidates are upping the ante. Ted Cruz hit back after John Boehner called him “Lucifer” and all but endorsed Cruz’s rival. “Donald Trump is attempting to perpetuate one of the greatest frauds in the history of modern elections, which is he is trying to convince people that he’s some sort of outsider,” Cruz said. “Donald is the essence of the Washington insider. He has been enmeshed in the corruption in Washington. One of the things that illustrated that powerfully this week was when John Boehner went out of his way to attack me, to call me the devil, and then he praised two people. John Boehner praised Hillary Clinton, and he praised Donald Trump. He said Donald was his friend, was his golfing and texting buddy.”

Cruz also joked, “I kind of wondered if Boehner was auditioning to be Donald Trump’s vice president. You know, a Trump-Boehner ticket would really say ‘The Washington Cartel’ in all its force. One has been funding the cartel. The other has been giving in to Democrats for years.”

The Hoosier State has been lightly polled so far, but a recent one shows Trump with a 15 point lead. Another shows Cruz winning by the same margin. So, as usual, the only poll that matters is the one on Election Day. Cruz is certainly hoping the endorsement of Gov. Mike Pence will give him a boost, and that Boehner’s virtual endorsement of Trump will put Cruz over the top.

Cruz isn’t done wrangling for delegates to bring to a possible contested convention either. The Texas senator managed to win a large majority of Arizona delegates at the state’s convention. Trump won the state, and thus secured the first-ballot votes of all 58 of its delegates, but should Trump fail to reach 1,237 before the convention and balloting goes beyond Round One, Cruz will have nearly three-quarters of Arizona’s 58. At first glance, Cruz is looking much stronger on the second and third ballots in a number a state delegations, but with the major caveat that those delegates may waver if Trump continues to gain momentum.

On a final campaign note, violent protesters once again interrupted a Trump rally, smashing police car windows and waving Mexican flags. Is there any better way to say “Vote for Trump”?

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