South Carolina’s delegation’s breakfast Thursday was split on whether or not Texas US Sen. Ted Cruz did the right thing by refusing to endorse Republican nominee Donald Trump in his primetime speech Wednesday.
Those who had supported Cruz in this spring’s primary largely defended him, while other delegates criticized the tone of his speech. Cruz had told delegates to “vote your conscience” in the upcoming election and notably did not mention voting for Trump. Some in the South Carolina delegation admitted they had been among those booing when Cruz finished his speech.
Spartanburg delegate and Cruz’s former campaign director in South Carolina LaDonna Ryggs said she enjoyed the speech. “People can disagree on what they thought they would have wanted to hear. And, you know, what they didn’t hear, but overall it was about freedom, which is what [the convention] is about tonight.” Her views were also supported by Charleston delegate K.C. Lombard who, “expected nothing less than a principled stand from Ted Cruz,” and was not disappointed in the speech.
However, many of South Carolina’s delegates held different views about Sen. Ted Cruz’s speech. Florence delegate Bill Pickle said he was, “totally, totally disappointed. Totally disappointed,” in Cruz’s decision to go against his prior agreement to endorse the eventual nominee. Greenwood alternate JoAnn Burroughs echoed a similar sentiment by saying that Sen. Cruz undermined the party’s unity because he didn’t keep his, “vow to support the candidate whoever won, no matter what.”
Donald Trump will have the final say tonight when he gives his acceptance speech on the final night of the convention.
Anne Eller of Greenwood affiliate WCRS contributed to this report.