Erick Erickson has an online petition calling for a Cruz-Rubio team-up and form a unity-ticket. While he doesn't say who he'd prefer at the top of the ticket, the answer is clearly Ted Cruz (he aligns with Erickson's brand of hard-core conservatism and he has written that it isn't Rubio who's standing up to Trump--it's really Cruz.. Whatevs. Call it Crubio.
Randy Barnett, on the other hand, comes up with the same idea--but in a slightly different formulation: in this case both candidates run separately but promise to combine their delegates at the convention (whoever has more gets 'em) and one is the other's VP. Thus they behave like a two headed snake (okay, three with Ted Cruz's two) and squeeze the life out of Trump from different directions. It's name is Rubuz.
The Omnivore likes Crubio better. Sounds nicer.
A third path is The Atlantic's look at fragmentation. No--this doesn't mean throwing a grenade into Trump's SUV--it means keeping Rubio and Cruz (and maybe Kasich) in the race to try to bleed Trump of delegates--to force a brokered convention--and then nominate someone--presumably Mitt Romney--once the dust settles and the fist fights are broken up.
Finally there's the 3rd Party Move where a 3rd Party--a Conservative Candidate (maybe Mitt Romney?) runs 3rd and the attempt is to hold EVERYONE under 270 votes so that the House can throw the presidency to whoever (probably Mitt).
Does anyone see a problem with this?
The Problems With Crubio (& Co.)The first problem is this: Each half of the Crubio Equation has arguments why the other should drop out or submit to the bottom of the Unity ticket. They're not going to agree because the entire argument each has is predicated on the future. Cruz is up now--but this was his best bet. Rubio looks like he's fading--but this wasn't his turf--and so on.
The Omnivore is sure that each of them would be willing to accept the other's bowing out with a lot of grace and gratitude--but isn't ready to do it themselves.
The second problem is with the parallel-campaigns plan. It's The Hunger Games problem. In The Hunger Games, if you recall, there can only be one winner--so at some point the tributes have to turn on each other. The hope is that they'll do it after taking down Trump--but each of them will be doing that calculation as they watch what's going on with the other's popularity.
The final problem with one of the Crubio scenarios is that it would pretty much prove everyone right about the establishment. In modern times running for president isn't a team sport--and while conservatives think Trump is the death of the party, what he really is is an expression of the party--at least about 40% of it or so. Maybe more.
Telling those people your two less popular candidates are going to super-hero team-up to beat their more popular choice would look rightfully like cheating. After all, if there was going to be one legitimate opposition-candidate, why not just run one? Why's it take two?
What This ShowsThe Cry-For-Crubio is an absurd solution to a real problem. The problem is this: people who hate Trump all think they should be on the same team--Anyone-But-Trump--but they're not. Each of them are harboring their own biases and favorites and what they really want is the other Not-Trumpers to just throw their hands up and get onboard with Cruz/Rubio (whichever it is). Since they can't say that, they couch it in neutral terms and hope the other side "sees the obvious."
Of course there already is an obvious solution: if you don't like Trump, vote for whoever you want. If Trump wins?
Vote for Hillary.