Ahead of a scheduled "major announcement" by Texas Senator Ted Cruz, Politico has revealed that the GOP presidential hopeful is set to declare former HP CEO Carly Fiorina as his choice for Vice Presidential candidate, should he secure the Republican nomination in July.
Three sources have reportedly confirmed that Fiorina, who ended her own presidential campaign in February, had been selected as Cruz’s running mate for a general election.
Fiorina, who was diagnosed and treated for breast cancer in 2009, registered to run against incumbent California Senator Barbara Boxer while still recovering from her chemotherapy treatment. Fiorina went on to lose the 2010 election in the reliably Democratic state by a 10-point margin, 52-42.
Cruz hopes that the announcement will help him regain some much-needed momentum after Tuesday’s east coast primary votes, which GOP frontrunner Donald Trump swept by wide margins.
The Cruz campaign is also banking on Fiorina’s ties to California, which holds its primary on June 7th. With 172 delegates – the most of any state in the union – California could make or break Trump’s bid to secure 1,237 delegates outright, and thus win the nomination on the first ballot at the convention.
Experts polled by FiveThirtyEight estimate that Trump must win more than 90 of the state’s 172 delegate in order to react 1,237 before the July convention.
But California’s winner-take-most system, whereby 159 of the 172 delegates are allotted by congressional district, could give Cruz an opening to concentrate on more conservative districts and siphon off enough delegates to keep Trump under 1,237.
Fiorina is slated to give the keynote address at this week's California GOP convention.
In September Trump drew criticism when he mocked Fiorina's physical appearance, saying "Look at that face! Would anyone vote for that? Can you imagine that, the face of our next president?"
A week later Trump withdrew his comments, calling Fiorina "beautiful".
As rumors of the VP pick emerged, Trump renewed his ridicule of Fiorina, calling the choice "cute".
"Carly did not resonate at all with people," said Trump. "[S]he had the one good debate... then she dropped like a rock".