In perhaps one of the strongest blows of this election cycle so far, Donald Trump has linked Ted Cruz’s father to the assassination of JFK. According to Politico, on Tuesday, Donald Trump alleged that Ted Cruz’s father, Rafael Cruz, was with John F. Kennedy’s assassin shortly before the president was murdered. It was certainly a strong allegation for Donald Trump to throw at his closest opponent, Cruz, with Trump even going as far to say that he couldn’t believe it had barely been brought up during the campaign for the Republican nomination.
Trump went on to question exactly why Cruz’s father would be with JFK’s assassin shortly before the assassination, saying in a phone interview “I mean, what was he doing — what was he doing with Lee Harvey Oswald shortly before the death? Before the shooting?” It’s an issue that Donald Trump spoke about in depth in his latest attempt to prevent Cruz from clawing back voters ahead of the Republican primary in Indiana.
According to Gawker, Donald Trump’s comments come following Rafael Cruz’s claims that God wants his son to be president, recently saying that if anybody else won the presidency, it could result in “the destruction of America.” However, that’s not a testament that Donald Trump was willing to accept from Rafael Cruz, hitting back by linking the Republican presidential candidate’s father to the assassination of JFK. Donald Trump’s comments weren’t completely without merit, though. Last week, the National Enquirer claimed to have photographs that identified Rafael Cruz with JFK’s assassin, Lee Harvey Oswald, shortly before the president was shot. Whilst the tabloid’s findings can’t be verified, it’s worth noting that they have in the past endorsed Donald Trump’s presidential campaign, suggesting that they could be largely biased towards the candidate.
Ted Cruz’s camp have, of course, hit back at Donald Trump’s allegations and the prospect that their candidate’s father was linked with JFK’s assassin. Alice Stewart, Cruz’s communications director said that “This is another garbage story in a tabloid full of garbage,” continuing to confirm that “The story is false; that is not Rafael in the picture.”
It definitely appears that we’ve reached the point in the campaign for the Republican nomination where candidates aren’t afraid to deal low blows. The theory that Ted Cruz’s father was linked to the assassination of JFK is far from cemented, but that hasn’t prevented Donald Trump from taking the story and running with it. That being said, a high-profile figure such as Donald Trump accusing Rafael Cruz of being involved in the assassination is sure to spark further interest and possibly investigation into the allegations. It will, however, be interesting to see whether Donald Trump makes the allegations a focal point of his campaign from now on or just uses them for the occasional attack against Cruz.
For Ted Cruz, his father’s intervention into his presidential campaign might not be all that welcome in the future, especially at a time when Ted Cruz is hoping to claw back key support from the very people that plan to vote Donald Trump in upcoming primaries.
It is, however, very clear that the religious focus of Ted Cruz’s campaign stems from his father. Rafael Cruz’s aforementioned comments were deeply religious and that’s a base of the Republican party that Ted Cruz has primarily focused on in his campaign so far. However, many claim that if Ted Cruz plans on providing any competition for Donald Trump, he’ll need to move away from just appealing to the religious corner of the Republican party and better focus on the many voters in the party that have chosen Donald Trump over himself.
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