With conservatives across the country facing a critical decision whether to back Donald Trump, top radio talker Rush Limbaugh said Wednesday that true conservatives have no choice but to vote for Ted Cruz.
Limbaugh told his radio audience, "If conservatism is your bag, if conservatism is the dominating factor in how you vote, there is no other choice for you in this campaign than Ted Cruz…."
Limbaugh gave his powerful imprimatur to Cruz by adding, "This [Ted Cruz] is the closest in our lifetimes we have ever been to Ronald Reagan."
Cruz has finished first in Iowa caucuses, but performed, not unexpectedly, poorly in New Hampshire, coming in third place behind Trump and Gov. Kasich.
Now the election turns to South Carolina and a slew of southern states that will vote on Super Tuesday in March.
Soon, the Cruz campaign believes that his strong conservative and evangelical backing will put him ahead of GOP front-runner Donald Trump.
Limbaugh described Trump as a non-ideological candidate.
"Trump's not a Republican; he's not a Democrat," he said.
"He's running as a Republican, but he's way beyond any of this. His definition of conservatism was we're gonna conserve. We're gonna conserve our money. We're gonna conserve our whatever…. Donald Trump is not an ideological candidate. He doesn't look, for example, at Chuck Schumer and see a screaming liberal. And, by the same token, he doesn't look at Ted Cruz and see a screaming conservative."
Limbaugh praised Trump for creating a broad, new coalition of voters and turning the political system upside down, but offered little doubt about his own political leanings.
"This is not a criticism of Trump. But for those of you that conservatism's the answer and conservatism is the way, you have no choice here. Ted Cruz has got to be your guy. There's nobody even close. Nobody."
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