The hope of unifying the Republican party hit another roadblock last night when Texas Sen. Ted Cruz failed to endorse Donald Trump during his speech at the Republican National Convention.
“Stand and speak, and vote your conscience. Vote up and down the ticket who you trust to defend our freedom,” Cruz said. The audience booed his comments.
Jennifer Mercieca, associate professor of communication at Texas A&M University, says that she wasn’t expecting last night’s turn of events.
“I was interested to see how Cruz was going to endorse Trump and what he would say, so I suppose it’s just a little bit more interesting that he refused to endorse Trump,” she says. “It really did look like it was kind of set up like wrestling match, where the Trump people came in, and Trump himself came in and sort of got rid of him off the stage. Fascinating.”
Mercieca says she thinks that Cruz was in an awkward position.
“I think that he wanted to be on the stage, I think he wanted to be a part of the convention and yet he did not want to endorse Trump,” she says. “He gave them a version of the speech that looked like he was endorsing Trump and then perhaps switched it at a later date.”
Mercieca says there are two ways of looking at Cruz’s actions. On one hand, some might say that he took the “higher ground” by sticking to his beliefs. However, it can also be seen as rude to show up to the convention and speak, yet not endorse.
“History might remember Ted Cruz as doing the right thing, standing up for decorum, standing up for the dignity of the presidency,” she says. “But on the other hand, in the immediate context, he does look pretty shady.”
Listen to the full interview in the audio player above.
Post by Alexandra Hart.