For fans of Game of Thrones, Donald John Trump auditioned for and won the role of The Mountain Thursday night in Houston, Texas, as he brutalized his nearest would-be challengers, Florida Sen. Marco Rubio and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, in the 10th Republican debate.
The combination shouting match and political blood bath offered viewers watching it on CNN a front row seat to the final five candidates hoping to win the Republican nomination for president. Who that nominee will be will be determined in July, in Cleveland, where Trump will either enter the foregone winner or have to fend off skulduggery by some challengers, especially Ohio Gov. John Kasich, who think they can turn the tables on the blustery New York real estate mogul at the last moment if, and only if a brokered convention comes into play.
Christie Endorses Trump Over Kasich
“Donald’s a great guy and a good person. But I just don’t think that he’s suited to be president of the United States […] I don’t think his temperament is suited for that and I don’t think his experience is,” Gov. Christie huffed last year. How sweet it is, to denounce someone then be on their team.
For Gov. Kasich, it was another long debate last night, when he again failed to breakout of his status as a laggard, even though seven other governors have since bowed out. On Friday, one of those seven governors, Chris Christie in New Jersey, endorsed Donald Trump for president. Kasich and Christie had been best buddies, as Christie, then the chairman of the Republican Governors Association, schmoozed the 63-year old term-limited governor at campaign stops in Ohio in 2014 when Kasich was running for a second term.
With Christie’s endorsement today, one can only wonder whether he’s secured a seat at Trump’s choice for vice president? A former federal prosecutor who loves to joust with media and anyone else for that matter, Chris Christie could add his status as a turnaround Republican governor and adversary that can tear someone down as easily as he can build them up.
Kasich Alone In His Own Lane
Kasich knows his only chance to move up from single digits in national polls and state polls is to make headway against news cycles that can’t focus on anything else other than the battle royal between Trump, Rubio and Cruz. It was, therefore, another blow to Camp Kasich when Christie, who was once thought to be the state chief executive who could best take on Democrats this fall, turned its back on Gov. Kasich to endorse his arch nemesis Trump on Friday after the bloody rumble last night in Houston.
National media is blind to Kasich’s record in his home state. The governor’s sweet but false narrative about how great he’s been for the Buckeye State has mesmerized Beltway reporters and pundits who seem incapable or unwilling to investigate what done as prologue to what he’ll do. It’s clear to Plunderbund and other media with a clear conscious that The Columbus Dispatch and Cleveland Plain Dealer are the defacto house organs for Camp Kasich’s campaign Kool-Aid that his long record in government makes his best qualified among Republican candidates to be president.
In an Friday editorial, The Toledo Blade weighed-in with great clarity on the governor and his record. Writing in “Mr. Kasich’s bogus brand,” The Blade said that Kasich “took off the gloves and removed his mask of moderation” when he signing legislation this week that cut off public funding to Planned Parenthood in Ohio. The Blade notes, as Plunderbund has, that Kasich continues to stay in the race even though he’s failed to gain traction with Republican base voters, who this year want thunder and lightening, not practical, pragmatic candidates who will compromise with Democrats. Even though Kasich’s natural state of rest is combative, dismissive and autocratic, he’s cleverly rebranded his off-putting self for the primary as a pragmatic, electable, adult in the room alternative to Donald Trump.
“Mr. Kasich needs to do more to separate himself from a pack of Republicans who would struggle mightily to capture the political center in this year’s presidential election. Just as Senators Rubio and Cruz seek to persuade voters that they are the real alternatives to Mr. Trump, Governor Kasich has shown he can be as extreme and callous as the best — or worst — of them.”