Republican presidential candidate, Ohio Gov. John Kasich listens at left as former Wisconsin Gov. Tommy Thompson addresses the crowd before introducing Kasich, Monday, March 28, 2016, at a town hall meeting at the River Steel plant in West Salem, Wis. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
Former Wisconsin governor and former HHS secretary Tommy Thompson is struggling to be relevant. A couple of weeks ago he endorsed the Zombie candidacy of John Kasich:
Thompson announced his endorsement of Kasich on “UPFRONT with Mike Gousha,” saying he believes the governor and former congressman will outperform Ted Cruz in the Midwest and northeast. He said Kasich offers voters an alternative to front runner Donald Trump.
“John Kasich is a better counterpoint to Donald Trump than Ted Cruz,” Thompson said on the program, produced in partnership withWisPolitics.com.
Now it is becoming obvious that John Kasich is competitive in very few areas. He won Ohio (to give him credit, Rubio did not win Florida) but he finished behind Rubio in Arizona after Rubio had left the race. He got less than 10% of the vote in Missouri, only narrowly beating out the out-of-the-race Rubio for last place. He was a non-entity in Iowa. He got 6% in Minnesota. 11% in Kansas. All of those states are the Midwest. No signs of strength there at all.
Now the Wisconsin primary is looming, Kasich trails both Cruz and Trump by double digits. This is make-or-break for Kasich. He had to pull ads from a lot of Wisconsin markets because of what can only be a cash shortage. If he finishes third, especially a distant third, his campaign is dead, DEAD, DEAD.
Enter Tommy Thompson:
Former Wisconsin Gov. Tommy Thompson said Tuesday that Ted Cruz is wrong to call Ohio Gov. John Kasich “a spoiler” and that voting for the Texas senator ultimately benefits Hillary Clinton.
“I think that Ted Cruz is trying to get as many votes as he possibly can and trying to get them away from John Kasich,” he told CNN’s Alisyn Camerota on “New Day.” “I think a vote for Ted Cruz is actually a vote for Hillary Clinton. I don’t think Ted Cruz could beat Hillary Clinton.”
Thompson, Wisconsin chairman of Kasich for President, said he hopes the Ohio governor wins the Wisconsin primary April 5 but he is ultimately focused on the general election.
“I know John Kasich, head to head, is the best candidate Republicans can put up to beat Hillary Clinton. If you vote for Ted Cruz or Donald Trump, you’re actually voting for Hillary Clinton,” he said.
How Kasich is the best bet to beat Hillary when he can’t beat Marco Rubio is a mystery. And Thompson, taking pages from the Donald Trump playbook, had to accuse Scott Walker, an actual conservative, of bad faith:
With the string of losers Kasich is drawing out of retirement homes to endorse him, can a Tom Ridge endorsement in Pennsylvania be far behind?