Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio talk after a Republican presidential primary debate, Thursday, Jan. 28, 2016, in Des Moines, Iowa. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)

Cruz & Rubio: The Enemy of My Enemy Should Not Be My Enemy

We have reached even new profound levels of nastiness between the Cruz and Rubio camps. There is, I know, a real dislike for Cruz among establishment types. There is also, I know, a real dislike for Rubio among anti-immigration types.

But most of my friends would love either man to be President. I am in that camp. When I write things critical of the Cruz camp, I am inundated with hate from Cruz supporters. When I write things praising Cruz, I am inundated with hate from the Rubio supporters. And vice versa.

I think both sides are so fearful of Trump and convinced that only their guy can take out Trump that they must annihilate the other guy to be able to take out Trump.

The reality is different. I think both sides should be taking out Trump now so they can deal with each other later. The problem, however, is that Iowa and New Hampshire complicate things.

Rubio now needs a very solid showing in South Carolina, which requires his campaign work hard against Cruz. Cruz needs a very solid showing in South Carolina, which requires that he work to counter Rubio.

So Trump gets a pass.

The staggering irony here is that if Jeb Bush would get out of the race — a man with no shot at winning South Carolina — his departure would shake up the race enough on its own that both Rubio and Cruz might have a shot at focusing on Trump instead of each other and woo Bush voters through their various anti-Trump pitches.

Cruz and Rubio and their mutual supporters should not be antagonist toward each other. But the antagonism has gone to a new level of hatred and animosity as South Carolina approaches. It is unfortunate. And should Trump gain the nomination, instead of each side blaming the other, they should both look in the mirror.

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Erick Erickson

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