Ted Cruz’s running mate was named yesterday, and it’s Carly Fiorina. Making a choice this early was a bit of a surprise, since most presidential candidates wait until nearer the convention, but according to Reuters, Cruz had to do something to slow the runaway “Trump Train” after the Texas Senator got mashed in five primaries on Tuesday.
“I think all would acknowledge this race, if anything, it is unusual,” Cruz said of the untraditional timing.
Indiana is shaping up as one of the most crucial Republican battlegrounds. Recognizing the Midwestern state’s importance, Cruz introduced his running mate at a rally in Indianapolis. A bigger surprise than the early announcement, though, was who Ted Cruz’s running mate turned out to be.
“Carly is a vice presidential nominee who I think is superbly skilled, superbly gifted at helping unite this party,” Cruz said.
Ted Cruz’s running mate, Carly Fiorina, is a former Hewlett-Packard chief executive who has never held elected office. She did win the California Republican primary for U.S. Senate in 2010 but lost in the general election. Fiorina dropped her own 2016 Republican presidential nomination bid in February. She endorsed Cruz a month later. The two rivals drew closer on the campaign trail after her endorsement, with Fiorina even singing to Cruz’s daughters on the campaign bus. The former rivals, now running mates, share conservative values, according to Cruz.
The battle against Trump, the improbable Goliath, didn’t scare Fiorina at all.
“I’ve had tough fights all my life. Tough fights don’t worry me a bit,” she said.
Aside from shared values, Ted Cruz’s running mate seems calculated to win over women voters. Trump has had trouble in that area. Trump didn’t help himself by insulting Fiorina’s looks in an interview when she was still in the running last year.
“Look at that face,” he had said. “Would anyone vote for that?”
Fiorina proved her fearlessness when she shot back during a televised debate.
“I think women all over this country heard very clearly what Mr. Trump said.”
Still, according to ABC News, Trump dismissed the Ted Cruz running mate announcement as both “desperate” and “futile.”
“First of all, you have to look — Cruz can’t win,” Trump said at a rally at the Indiana State Fairgrounds. “What’s he doing picking vice presidents? He can’t win.”
Ted Cruz choosing a running mate made him the first presidential candidate to pick a running mate when already mathematically eliminated from the race, according to Donald Trump. However, before a contested convention with Gerald Ford in 1976, Ronald Reagan chose Sen. Richard Schweiker as his running mate.
Now that Ted Cruz has chosen a running mate, many wonder who Donald Trump will choose.
Bethann McKernan of the Indy 100 suggested some possibilities. Although her list seems improbable to many, she points out that Trump has repeatedly voiced his dislike of career politicians. Cruz as running mate would be out, she says, especially after the brutal contest between the rivals so far.
McKernan lists radio talk show host Howard Stern, Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban, World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) CEO Vince McMahon, and billionaire businessman Carl Icahn as a few radical choices. Former rival candidate Ben Carson came up as a possibility, although he and Trump are not close. Trump and Sarah Palin admire each other, though. And while he is a politician, Ohio State Senator Rob Portman has said he would support Trump if the front-runner won the nomination.
Trump himself has named New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie as a possible running mate. Christie downplayed the possibility in early March. However, Christie is apparently not out of the running for the V.P. nomination, according to Trump.
“I think he’s fantastic,” Trump said when asked what he thought of Christie as a running mate.
The popular opinion is that if Trump wins in Indiana, the Republican Party will be forced to accept him as their presidential candidate. A Cruz win might still put that victory in doubt with a contested convention. All eyes are on Ted Cruz’s running mate, Carla Fiorina, to see if she makes the difference.
Are you surprised that Ted Cruz chose a running mate this soon in the race? Who do you think Donald Trump should choose as his running mate?
[Photo by Ty Wright/Getty Images]