Cruz, Trump in Secret Talks

It’s a bromance with a payoff—the senator has been developing the billionaire’s support and their aides are even discussing joint events, but if Trump drops out, Cruz aims to clean up.

From: thedailybeast.com,  by Tim Mak, on Aug 19, 2015,  see the article HERE. Emphasis is Garnet92’s

Trump and Cruz

Donald Trump and Ted Cruz’s mutual admiration is turning into a conservative bromance—one that could have a huge strategic payoff for the Texas senator’s presidential campaign.

Behind the scenes, Cruz has been methodologically developing Trump’s support. The two candidates have met in person at least five times and talk by phone occasionally. And in the future, they may even hold events together.

The two campaigns privately discussed a possible joint event this year in Washington, D.C., and Cruz was invited to join Trump’s infamous trip to the Mexico border, though a scheduling problem prevented him from attending, sources told The Daily Beast.

“In terms of Trump’s civility, if you’re nice to him, he’ll be nice to you. And Cruz has been nice. Cruz is playing the long game and hopes that if he survives and Trump doesn’t, the billionaire will swing to him. He’s the second choice for a lot of Trump voters,” said a source familiar with the inner workings of the Trump campaign.

“Cruz has been cultivating Donald for some time, declining to criticize him after the immigration flap or the McCain controversy, sending messages through operatives, dropping by Trump Tower when in New York,” the source continued.

“Cruz is being very sly,” the Trump campaign insider said. “[He] attracts the same types of voter. A lot of second-choice voters for Trump are Cruz people… Cruz wants those votes.”

The two draw from similar segments of the Republican primary electorate—sometimes, almost too similar. In the video launching his presidential bid, Cruz made a passing reference to “make America great again,” which has since become the Trump campaign’s slogan. Trump applied for a trademark on the phrase shortly after the 2012 election.

The Texas senator’s use of the phrase, even in passing, prompted the Trump Organization to reach out and warn the Cruz camp in a friendly manner not to use it again, according to a Trump campaign insider.

The relationship has proved to be mutually beneficial for the two presidential candidates, but Cruz stands to benefit the most.

If Trump’s campaign were to flame out, it stands to reason that Cruz would be near the top of the list for potential endorsements. And even without an endorsement, Cruz would likely be a strong contender for Trump supporters looking for a new candidate to support. Cruz’s PAC also received money from Trump: a $5,000 donation in 2014.

“Cruz is being very sly,” the Trump campaign insider said. “[He] attracts the same types of voter. A lot of second-choice voters for Trump are Cruz people… Cruz wants those votes.”

In Cruz, Trump has a prominent politician who is willing to defend his comments. He may even have, in his mind, a potential running mate.

After Trump said during his campaign launch that Mexican “rapists” and “killers” were migrating to the United States, Cruz stepped up to defend the comments.

“I like Donald Trump. I think he’s terrific, I think he’s brash, I think he speaks the truth,” Cruz said on Fox News.

The Trump campaign did not respond to a request for comment. The Cruz campaign declined to comment. But an aide to Cruz, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said the two had bonded over the issue of illegal immigration.

“The senator has repeatedly credited Trump for bringing so much attention to the illegal immigration issue,” the aide said. “The senator has been, in my mind, extremely clear about not wanting to belittle Trump and his supporters, because [those supporters] feel very passionately about a serious issue. That has certainly set the senator apart from the other candidates who have been critical of Trump, and by association critical of Trump’s supporters as well.”

As early as 2013, Trump believed that Cruz would run for president, a Trump campaign insider said.

The two met briefly at the Iowa Family Leadership summit in August 2013. “I thought he was a terrific guy,” Trump said on Fox News shortly after. “I met his father. Also terrific. And we had a great conversation.”

Following their first run-in, discussions began about a more formal meeting. It eventually happened in November 2013, when Cruz visited Trump Tower while on a fundraising swing through New York City.

During the meeting, the two discussed Cruz’s birthplace, Cruz told The Dallas Morning News. But Cruz’s erstwhile Canadian citizenship was not to be a problem—at least not an insurmountable one. Two months later, in January 2014, Trump donated $5,000 to Cruz’s PAC, the Jobs Growth and Freedom Fund.

Trump and Cruz met again at Trump Tower in mid-July of this year.

Just days later, Trump questioned whether Senator John McCain was a hero because he was captured as a POW, and Cruz declined to condemn the statement, calling Trump “a friend” on CNN.

Trump and Cruz have appeared at other events together, such as an American Spectator dinner and a Republican event at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago Club in Florida. And during the government shutdown in 2013, the two spoke by phone, Politico reported.

But their chummy relationship hasn’t bought Cruz immunity from Trump’s birther instincts. As recently as March, Trump cast doubt on whether Cruz could run for present, since Cruz was born in Canada.

In certain circles on the right, this is no small issue. On the day of Cruz’s presidential campaign launch, Rush Limbaugh gave a long monologue on his conservative talk radio show insisting the senator is eligible for the White House.

Trump and Cruz have not made any secret of their mutual admiration. Cruz has had no problem developing combative relationships with other Republicans in the presidential field or in Congress, but with Trump it has been nothing but kindness. If anything, their public praise understates the curiously cozy relationship that the two have in private.

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I don’t know what these guys have up their sleeve, I just hope that it’ll be beneficial for the country. I’ve always felt that Cruz would be in a position to pick up the majority of Trump’s supporters if Trump dropped out of the race, but it’s looking more and more that The Donald has no intention of taking a dive. I heard about a meeting they had in Trump’s offices, but I didn’t know that they’d met five times. Perhaps there’s collusion afoot?

Garnet92.

 

 

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12 Responses to Cruz, Trump in Secret Talks

  1. Hardnox says:

    Hummm… very interesting.

    I do like how they never threw rocks at each other from day one.

  2. Buck says:

    I have thought all along Trump may swing his support to Cruz. But now he is gaining momentum he might go it himself…. We’ll see.

    • Garnet92 says:

      Yeah I thought that too, Buck, but now that Trump has a whiff of being the political leader of the pack, I think he likes it and just may stay.

  3. I.R. Wayright says:

    There might be a downside to this. If Cruz prevails and receives a lot of monetary support from Trump, lefties will complain that Cruz is in Donald Trump’s pocket. As in just another politician he has bought and paid for. Be careful Ted.

    • Garnet92 says:

      Frankly I.R., if Cruz prevails, I don’t care what the lefties think. So far at least, Trump has given more to Hillary in the past than he’s given Cruz. And if all Cruz has to do for the donation is attend a wedding, that’s ok with me.

  4. Buck says:

    I don’t think Cruz would need the monetary support from Trump. Just the word to Trumpets that the Trump was withdrawing and throwing his support to Cruz…

  5. Kathy says:

    I’m not sure what to make of this, but it is refreshing to see as compared to the bashing we normally see between candidates. Let’s save that for the Dems.

    IR makes a good point too, but since Ted’s already received donations from Trump, I think he’d handle it well.

    • Garnet92 says:

      At least as far as immigration goes, Trump and Cruz agree on most everything, except perhaps the H-1B issue where I know that Cruz wants to increase the number, but I don’t know how he feels about requiring that they must be paid the prevailing wages and not undercut citizen applicants.

  6. tannngl says:

    “Cruz is playing the long game and hopes that if he survives and Trump doesn’t, the billionaire will swing to him. He’s the second choice for a lot of Trump voters,” said a source familiar with the inner workings of the Trump campaign.”

    That’s a new one to me.

    Cruz is 2nd choice for Trump voters.
    That is interesting.
    I’ll bet Ted has known that for a while.

    • Garnet92 says:

      I suspect that he has, tannngl. I think that Cruz is playing this nomination campaign smartly and close to the vest. He’s supposedly getting big crowds everywhere he speaks and he’s raising tons of money – he’s just not getting the media attention that Trump is getting.