Branstad is a critic of Cruz’s opposition to the federal ethanol production mandate. Two weeks before the Caucuses Branstad said he hoped Cruz would be defeated — a move Congressman King blasted as a “de facto endorsement” of Donald Trump.
“Well, I did,” Branstad said today of his wish for Cruz’s defeat. “Actually, I think Trump, by skipping the debate, hurt himself.”
Branstad’s 2010 and 2014 campaign managers migrated to New Jersey Chris Christie’s presidential campaign. Christie finished 10th, with fewer than 3300 votes. Branstad said Christie didn’t spend enough time campaigning in Iowa.
“None of the governors did well,” Branstad said. “…Rubio came on strong at the end because people were looking for somebody new.”
The Caucus winner was someone Branstad opposed and Christie finished next to last, but Branstad rejects the notion Monday’s Caucus results are in any way a rebuke of him.