'Dump Trump' Deal: Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio, John Kasich Collude To Stop The Donald In Florida, Ohio

  • by: Alan Duke

Donald Trump's three remaining GOP opponents apparently have colluded on a plan to slow the billionaire's momentum and force a brokered Republican convention in which establishment leaders choose the party's ticket.

The first move came Friday when Marco Rubio's campaign urged Ohio Republicans to cast their votes for their governor, John Kasich, instead of their candidate.

In exchange, Kasich has stopped campaigning in Florida, where polls show Trump has a lead over the Florida senator.

The conventional wisdom is that Trump's road to Cleveland, where the GOP convention will be held in July, will be much more difficult if he does not win both Ohio and Florida. The best way to prevent Trump from sweeping both states could be for Rubio and Kasich to trade votes in each other's home states.

Resurgent.com reported Friday that "the deal is made" after Cruz, Rubio and Kasich each met privately with Jeb Bush.

Cruz's campaign takes down its Florida ads. The Cruz Super PACs follow suit allegedly -- at least some of them have signaled they too are getting out.

Marco Rubio revs up his Florida presence and is nowhere to be found in Illinois, Missouri, and North Carolina.

The Cruz campaign redirects all its resources to those three states, with Cruz rallies, ad buys, GOTV etc.

Now Rubio's spokesman goes on national television and says Rubio supporters should vote for John Kasich in Ohio.

Kasich is going all in in Ohio and ceding Illinois, Missouri, and North Carolina to Cruz. In fact, Kasich suddenly has no events in Illinois, and only one event in Pennsylvania after the Ohio primary.

In other words, Kasich is now only campaigning in Ohio; Rubio is only campaigning in Florida; and Cruz is avoiding events in Florida and Ohio.

  Alan Duke

Editor-in-Chief Alan Duke co-founded Lead Stories after ending a 26-year career with CNN, where he mainly covered entertainment, current affairs and politics. Duke closely covered domestic terrorism cases for CNN, including the Oklahoma City federal building bombing, the UNABOMBER and search for Southeast bomber Eric Robert Rudolph. CNN moved Duke to Los Angeles in 2009 to cover the entertainment beat. Duke also co-hosted a daily podcast with former HLN host Nancy Grace, "Crime Stories with Nancy Grace" and hosted the podcast series "Stan Lee's World: His Real Life Battle with Heroes & Villains." You'll also see Duke in many news documentaries, including on the Reelz channel, CNN and HLN.

Read more about or contact Alan Duke

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