Sometimes it’s not what you say, it’s what you don’t say.
Last night Ted Cruz did more to unite the Republican party than any speaker thus far in the convention. Unfortunately for the Texas senator they were united in booing him
Surprisingly Texas Sen.Ted Cruz declined to endorse Donald Trump during his prime time speech at the RNC and was rousingly booed for his effort. The closest he came was with his opening words when the Texas senator congratulated Trump on winning the nomination and said he wanted to see the party’s conservative principles in the White House.
According to The Hill, up until the time he stepped on the stage, the Texas senator’s senior advisers were urging him to endorse Trump.
Cruz never wanted to endorse Trump and is still furious about the personal attacks the GOP presidential nominee made on his family during the primary campaign, sources familiar with the speech preparations told The Hill.
Cruz, who has already begun to position his team to run for president in 2020, is still justifiably angry about attacks on both his father and his wife during the primary season, but his advisors realized that emotion rarely wins in politics and were worried that the lack of endorsement will hurt Cruz’s political future.
What made his non-endorsement so surprising is that Cruz is a bright man, he had to know the reaction he would get from the senior people in the party. Despite his intelligence and his adherence to conservative principals, before last night, senior party members didn’t like Cruz, after last night they liked him even less.
Senator Cruz spent most of his speech beating up on Hillary and the Democrats, along with promoting conservative values, but when it came time to endorse instead Cruz told Republicans not to stay home, and to vote their conscience.
“To those listening, please, don’t stay home in November. If you love our country, and love your children as much as I know you do, stand, and speak, and vote your conscience, vote for candidates up and down the ticket who you trust to defend our freedom and to be faithful to the Constitution,”
Sensing the non-endorsement some in the crowd started chanting “endorse Trump” Cruz responded, “I appreciate the enthusiasm of the New York delegation.” The boos and jeers got worse and were accompanied with more delivered more chants of “endorse Trump.”
As Cruz was concluding his speech the crowd broke out in cheers, not for the Senator, but for the nominee, Donald Trump as he entered the arena to listen to his son’s speech. The Trump campaign knew exactly what Cruz was going to say as they received an advanced copy of the speech and issued a copy to the press about an hour before the Texas senator spoke. Team Trump knew exactly when the candidate should walk in to ruin Cruz’s conclusion.
In the end it was Cruz who damaged his own speech, and quite possibly his political future with his non-endorsement. Republican leadership was angry about his non-endorsement, and so were some of the party’s money men.
Fox News reported that as he left the stage RNC donors called Cruz speech “classless.” Also after his speech the Texas senator went to the suite of billionaire Sheldon Adelson. Earlier in the day the major GOP moneyman had invited Cruz to his suite Adelson, disappointed in the lack of an endorsement turned the senator away when he showed up.
Cruz was followed by Newt Gingrich who played mop-up:
— ABC News Politics (@ABCPolitics) July 21, 2016