Updated on April 25 at 1:16 a.m.
Texas Senator Ted Cruz and Ohio Governor John Kasich announced plans Sunday night to collaborate against Donald Trump in three upcoming state primaries, formalizing an 11th-hour effort among some Republicans to deny their party’s front-runner the nomination through a contested convention.
First, the Cruz campaign said in a late-evening press statement it would abandon its efforts to win the Oregon primary on May 17 and the New Mexico primary on June 7.
“To ensure that we nominate a Republican who can unify the Republican Party and win in November, our campaign will focus its time and resources in Indiana and in turn clear the path for Gov. Kasich to compete in Oregon and New Mexico, and we would hope that allies of both campaigns would follow our lead,” Cruz campaign manager Jeff Roe said.
The Kasich campaign then issued its own statement announcing it would cede the May 7 Indiana primary to Cruz, citing the winner-take-all system of delegate allocation there. “We are very comfortable with our delegate position in Indiana already, and given the current dynamics of the primary there, we will shift our campaign’s resources West and give the Cruz campaign a clear path to Indiana,” Kasich campaign chief strategist John Weaver said.