“After many months of careful consideration, of prayer and searching my own conscience,” Cruz wrote on his Facebook page, “I have decided that on Election Day, I will vote for the Republican nominee, Donald Trump.”
Trump dubbed the Texas senator “Lyin’ Ted” during the Republican primary contest, as the two fought fiercely for the GOP nomination. In a primetime speech at the Republican National Convention in July, Cruz pointedly refused to endorse Trump, urging the audience to “vote your conscience” and exiting to a chorus of boos.
The next morning, Trump insinuated that Cruz’s father had something to do with the 1963 assassination of President John F. Kennedy. There’s nothing to support the idea of a connection between Rafael Cruz and Lee Harvey Oswald, but Trump claimed “there was a picture on the front page of the National Enquirer that does have credibility.”
Except that apparently he is.
Watch Heidi Cruz’ reaction to her husband’s RNC speech in July. (Video by Rick Perlstein.)
In his endorsement, Cruz did not address Trump’s attacks on his family. Instead, he suggested that he had always planned to back the Republican Party’s nominee and said that Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton is a really bad option.
“I’ve made this decision for two reasons,” Cruz wrote. “First, last year, I promised to support the Republican nominee. And I intend to keep my word.
“Second, even though I have had areas of significant disagreement with our nominee, by any measure Hillary Clinton is wholly unacceptable — that’s why I have always been #NeverHillary.”
“If he announces he endorses, it destroys his political brand,” an anonymous former Cruz campaign worker told Politico.
“I am greatly honored by the endorsement of Senator Cruz,” Trump said. “We have fought the battle and he was a tough and brilliant opponent.”
This article has been updated to include Trump’s statement.