Sen Ted Cruz, R-Texas has developed a two-pronged strategy to winning the Republican nomination for president. The first prong is to attempt to beat Donald Trump in the remaining primary states to win the most delegates, perhaps enough to lock down the nomination. The second prong is to deny Trump enough delegates for him to cinch the nomination and then fight him on the floor of the convention. The former strategy is mathematically possible but tough. The latter is doable, so long as Trump falls short on the first ballot. The trick would be to outmaneuver that self-admitted master deal maker and get enough support to win on the second ballot.

The Republican Party is caught in a quandary because of Trump’s unexpected success. On the one hand, Trump is the undisputed front runner, and the tendency is naturally to rally around him as the probable winner. On the other hand, all polling data suggests that Trump would be a disastrous candidate in the fall election, perhaps the one person in America who could lose to the morally and legally challenged Hillary Clinton.

Cruz may enjoy the irony that he has become the Republican Party’s last best hope of salvaging 2016, an election year that by rights they should find victory during. Cruz was supposed to be the more “extreme” candidate, too conservative and too strident to win. But he is a mushy moderate compared to Trump, a man who has upended every rule of politics by his behavior on the stump.

The other group that should appreciate the irony is the so-called Republican establishment. One by one their preferred candidates, including Jeb Bush and Marco Rubio, have fallen by the wayside. John Kasich is the only establishment candidate left, and he has no chance of winning the nomination, at least by conventional means. He seems to be running to be vice president, for Trump or Cruz has yet to be determined.

One thing is for certain; the Republican National Convention will not be a boring coronation. It will be the most exciting political event in a couple of generations, with the outcome very much in doubt.   #Donald Trump #Election 2016 #Democrats vs Republicans