The campaigns for Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) and Ohio Gov. John Kasich on Sunday announced that they will join together to attempt to keep Donald Trump from winning the Republican presidential primaries in Indiana, New Mexico, and Oregon.
Cruz will focus on winning Indiana and Kasich will take the lead in Oregon and New Mexico, according to the campaigns.
“Having Donald Trump at the top of the ticket in November would be a sure disaster for Republicans. Not only would Trump get blown out by Clinton or Sanders, but having him as our nominee would set the party back a generation,” Cruz campaign manager Jeff Roe said in a Sunday statement.
“To ensure that we nominate a Republican who can unify the Republican Party and win in November, our campaign will focus its time and resources in Indiana and in turn clear the path for Gov. Kasich to compete in Oregon and New Mexico, and we would hope that allies of both campaigns would follow our lead,” Roe continued.
Both campaigns said they will compete as usual in the remaining primaries.
“Our goal is to have an open convention in Cleveland, where we are confident a candidate capable of uniting the Party and winning in November will emerge as the nominee,” the Kasich campaign said in a Sunday statement.
“We are very comfortable with our delegate position in Indiana already, and given the current dynamics of the primary there, we will shift our campaign’s resources West and give the Cruz campaign a clear path in Indiana,” the statement reads. “We will focus our time and resources in New Mexico and Oregon, both areas that are structurally similar to the Northeast politically, where Gov. Kasich is performing well.”
The Cruz and Kasich campaigns discussed this strategy in a meeting last week in Hollywood, Florida, where members of the Republican National Committee were gathered for meetings, according to the Washington Post. The campaigns finalized the plans on Sunday before sending out statements announcing the strategy, according to the Post.