Ted Cruz Warns Picking Jeb In 2016 Means Hillary Becomes President

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December 16, 2014 4:35 p.m.

In response to the news that former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush (R) had taken a big step toward running for president in 2016, Sen. Ted Cruz’s (R-TX) response was a warning: if the right nominates a moderate Republican, Hillary Clinton will become president.

“If we nominate another candidate in the mold of a Bob Dole or a John McCain or a Mitt Romney — and let me be clear, all three of those men, they’re good men, they’re honorable men, they’re decent men, they’re men of character, they’re war heroes — but what they did didn’t work,” Cruz told Politico. “It did not succeed. And if we nominate another candidate in that same mold, the same voters who stayed home in 2008 and 2012 will stay home in 2016, and Hillary Clinton is the next president.”

Politico pressed Cruz on whether that comment meant Bush is in that moderate “mold” and Cruz said “that’s going to be a decision for the primary voters to make.”

It’s hard to see this as anything other than a thinly veiled jab at Bush by someone who also appears to be planning to run for president in 2016 (he did, however, say that he’s a “big fan” of the former Florida governor).

There are a number of reports floating around that the tea party favorite Cruz wants to run as a conservative for president. Asked about when he plans to make a decision on 2016 Cruz said he thinks “it’s likely the field will form sometime between January and June of next year.”

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