There is a potential that we are headed to a contested convention. I wrote before and I still believe that Trump is on his way to 1237 before the event. In this article I would like to discuss a strategy for Trump that will help him get the magic number.
Rule 40b is the rule that states a candidate needs to have had a majority of the delegates in 8 states for him or her to be nominated in the convention. This means that the only two candidates eligible for nomination would be Trump and Cruz. The best strategy for Trump would be to have this rule repealed. It does not necessarily mean that Trumpian delegates should do it themselves. They can just offer no resistance when the establishment does it. I see a move like this driving a permanent wedge between Cruz and the never trump forces. Before I discuss why this is good for Trump lets take a look at the 3 factions still running and their strategy
With very little connections inside the political establishment and the Republican party infrastructure relying on the popular vote is really the only hope for Trump to get the nomination. I agree that if Trump does not win on the first ballot then he does not win at all.
With a well-funded war chest donated by his millionaire donors and more recently wall street Cruz definitely has the money to build a solid ground game. His unholy alliance with the establishment gives him the backing of the political apparatus as well to sway delegates to his cause. His strategy is off course second ballot forward. Rule 40b is necessary here as he does not want to fight an outsider challenge.
The GOPe would like to put forward their own candidate that they feel is more electable come the general. They believe that by doing this they save the downticket and give the party a more noble defeat in the election. I’ve written before how this strategy is insane but it is what they truly believe. The alliance with Cruz is of course a temporary one as they need a proxy to fight Trump.
THE ART OF WAR
We have already established that Trump will lose on the second vote. This is important because it means the personal loyalty of each delegate is no longer important to him. As long as they vote the way they are bound to for the first ballot then that is all that is necessary. Spending resources to prepare for the second ballot would be a waste as the deck is stacked against him.
Cruz however is doing everything he can to get the delegates he selects into the convention. Here is the rub though. Cruz is using the apparatus of the establishment to do that. Cruz is not looking at any conflicts of loyalty between him and the GOPe as the rules currently state that only he and Trump can be nominated.
If you remove rule 40B then Cruz will have to invest more of his resources into the delegate selection process as he now has to contend with delegates who may not have loyalty to Trump but may very well have loyalty to the establishment. This also drives a wedge in between the current Cruz-GOPe alliance as it makes both want delegate loyalty to their faction. While the delegate hunt consumes the resources of both factions Trump can spend his on winning over voters.