Sen. Ted Cruz told supporters on a conference call on Monday night that he will not contest Donald Trump’s nomination at the Republican convention, but will seek to use his delegates to influence the party platform.
The announcement comes after reports earlier in the day that the Texas senator had sent a letter to the state parties in Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas, at least, informing them he was not releasing his delegates.
Rep. Ken Buck, R-Colo., who was on the call, told Politico, “They made a point of saying, ‘This is not something nefarious we’re plotting at the convention.’ The Cruz team really just wants to make sure the platform reflects conservative values so that conservatives are excited about turning out this November and in the future.”
“The unspoken message [on the call] is that we don’t know what’s going to happen in the next three to four months in terms of Donald Trump and his message, who he chooses as vice president, and the best thing we can do is to be there and hope that Donald Trump proves he’s going to recognize conservatives in his administration,” added Buck, who chaired Cruz’s campaign in Colorado. The congressman plans to attend the July convention as a delegate.
Politico reported that no one on the 25-minute call spoke directly about Trump, who has been making headlines, seemingly reversing his views on tax policy (saying the wealthy should pay higher taxes than they currently do) and raising the minimum wage. The presumptive GOP nominee’s position on imposing new tariffs on imported goods runs contrary to conservative orthodoxy as well.
“The main thrust [of the call] was, it is still [important] to stay engaged in the process, go to your state GOP convention if it remains upcoming and keep your plans to go to the convention in Cleveland,” a source said.
h/t: The Hill