Donald Trump isn’t the only dealmaker among the 2016 GOP hopefuls.
The Ohio governor has agreed to give Cruz a “clear path” to victory in the winner-take-all contest in Indiana next week, and in return, the Texas senator will concede Oregon and New Mexico to Kasich.
With this strategy, the two candidates hope to block Trump from gaining the 1,237 delegates needed to clinch the nomination this summer.
“This is a nationwide campaign and we’re making a decision where to focus our time, energy and resources,” Cruz told conservative radio host Laura Ingraham on Monday. “We are now focused very, very heavily on the state of Indiana. It is significant that John Kasich is pulling out of Indiana and allowing us to go directly head to head with Donald Trump.”
The agreement did not, however, stop Kasich from urging Indiana voters to support him over Cruz. “They ought to vote for me,” he told reporters at a Philadelphia diner, according to CNN. “I’m not campaigning in Indiana and he’s not campaigning in these other states, that’s all. It’s not a big deal.”
Trump saw things differently. The billionaire businessman took to Twitter Sunday night to blast Cruz and Kasich’s arrangement:
He continued his tirade on Monday:
Trump Tells Supporters: If I Lose ‘I Don’t Think You’re Ever Going to See Me Again’
Over the weekend, Trump made a campaign promise he may regret – telling supporters at a rally in Maryland that if he loses the nomination, he will remove himself from the public eye.
Mocking candidates who praise their rivals during concession speeches, Trump said, “They fight like hell for six months, and they’re saying horrible things, the worst things you can imagine. And then one of them loses, one of them wins. And the one who loses says, ‘I just want to congratulate my opponent. He is a brilliant man, he’ll be a great governor or president,’ or whatever,” he said.
“I’m not sure you’re ever going to see me there. I don’t think I’m going to lose, but if I do, I don’t think you’re ever going to see me again, folks. I think I’ll go to Turnberry and play golf or something.”