In a display of too-little-too-late-ism that ranks up there with "Flowers from a cheating husband," John Kasich and Ted Cruz have agreed on a kind of alliance of f-ckery, a Megazord of fail, if you will. Said a spokesturd for Cruz, "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 after Trump wrecks both of them in Pennsylvania and mocks them relentlessly for this strategy (which he's already doing), it's gonna be pathetic watching those campaigns limp around until they finally have the sense to just lay down and fade away...I can see the intent by Cruz and Kasich to try and generate enough delegates for themselves - and not trip over each other to do so - to prevent Trump from winning outright, but this sort of move is almost impossible to coordinate because voters are going to make up their own damn minds in these primaries and they may not want to play this game.
It gets more interesting when Jennifer Rubin at the Washington Post considers the ramifications:
...It emphasizes the degree to which the most likely alternative to Trump — Cruz — has failed to unite the GOP. He can either work hard at crafting an agenda and message directed at “somewhat conservative” voters, or he can make the case that Republicans are not going to win Oregon, New Mexico, Maryland and the like in November, so it shouldn’t matter...
...Cruz’s perceived weakness in turn leads to another unintended consequence of the deal: It will heighten interest in a third candidate. It is now evident that neither Cruz nor Kasich is a sterling candidate. The odds of a Trump nomination are high, so shouldn’t backers of a third candidate get cracking...?The argument for there being a Third Party candidate that can SAVE the Republican Party from itself is getting more dire: and it turns out there ARE deadlines for a Third Party to file that are due BEFORE the July convention in Cleveland. From what I'm reading here on the Ballotpedia page, it looks like you have to file as an Independent in Texas by MAY 9th! That's two weeks away.
Before all this, there was the fear among Republicans that Trump would go Third Party on them out of spite and ruin their chances to secure any Electoral College AND Popular Vote wins. NOW the fear among Republicans is that they're going to have to run a Third Party candidate because having Trump run at the top of their ticket will (not could) ruin the entire ballot for them. Even though if they do this Third Party move, the Republicans run the very real risk that Trump will - again out of spite - tell his voters at the least to refuse to vote for ANY Republican down-ballot.
Very much a Lose-Lose situation at the moment. Time to remind the readership about the phrase involving the deck chairs of the Titanic.
The only thing the Republicans can hope for now is out-and-out voter suppression, and even THAT can blow up in their faces.