A couple of weeks ago a Penn State student and chairman of the Pennsylvania Students for Rubio group, Nathaniel Rome, filed a lawsuit alleging that John Kasich had not gathered enough signatures to qualify for the Pennsylvania ballot. The campaign admitted it was true and asked the Rubio campaign to direct Rome to drop the lawsuit.
John Kasich’s presidential campaign called on Marco Rubio to tell his supporters in Pennsylvania to drop a lawsuit that could keep the Ohio governor off the ballot for the state’s April 26 primary.
Nathaniel Rome, chairman of Pennsylvania Students for Rubio, filed a petition in Pennsylvania court to keep Kasich off the ballot, since he failed to garner the requisite number of signatures to be added. Rome’s lawyer is John Bravacos, the brother of Chris Bravacos, who is chairman of Rubio’s Pennsylvania campaign.
“Senator Rubio should tell his people to drop this suit and to have his super-PAC quit attacking John Kasich in Florida,” Kasich campaign spokesman Rob Nichols told Bloomberg Politics.
That is exactly what has happened:
On Wednesday, a day after the Florida senator suspended his campaign, Rubio student operative Nathaniel Rome dropped the Commonwealth Court filing he initiated, said Chris Bravacos, CEO of the Bravo Group and brother to the attorney representing Rome.
Bravacos said Rome asked to withdraw his objection to the Kasich nominating petition. He did not elaborate.
It is difficult to view this move charitably but it seems like the Rubio camp has decided that sticking their finger in Ted Cruz’s eye is a lot more important than winning this year:
Former Pennsylvania Rep. Bob Walker, a senior advisor to Kasich, told the Tribune-Review that he — along with others in the Kasich camp — have actively been working to sway Rubio’s supporters over to their side.
“There are ongoing discussions that have been very friendly,” Walker said. “We would love to have their people come over to support us.”
He added, “I expect by the end of the day a substantial amount of the impressive Rubio team will join us.”
Blocking Kasich from Pennsylvania would have scuttled his dunderheaded campaign and turned the race into a two-man race and eliminating the necessity of Cruz competing with the 5 or so percent of the electorate who will still vote Kasich. This is a small percentage but it is a critical one as every delegate counts when it comes to stopping Trump.