- The Washington Times - Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Donald Trump said Wednesday that his GOP primary rivals who have failed to follow through on their promise to support the party’s eventual nominee should be barred from seeking elected office again.

“They broke their word,” Mr. Trump, the presumptive GOP presidential nominee, said during a rally in Maine. “In my opinion, they should never be allowed to run for public office again because what they did is disgraceful.”

Fueled by fears that Mr. Trump would launch a third-party bid, the Republican National Committee urged the crowded Republican field of presidential candidates to sign a pledge last year that called on them to “endorse the 2016 Republican presidential nominee regardless of who it is” and forgo running as an independent or as a write-in candidate.

After some hesitation, Mr. Trump signed the pledge, and his rivals signaled they also were on board.

But since Mr. Trump wrapped up the nomination, Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas and Gov. John Kasich of Ohio, as well as former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and former Hewlett Packard CEO Carly Fiorina are among the Republican candidates that have yet to throw their support behind the New York billionaire.

Speaking in Maine, Mr. Trump said he would have honored the RNC’s pledge and said the reluctance of his former foes to do so is a “terrible thing.”

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“They signed a pledge saying they will abide, saying they will back the candidate of the party and now they sit back,” Mr. Trump said.

Mr. Kasich’s former chief strategist, John Weaver, meanwhile, raised eyebrows Wednesday after he blasted out an email Wednesday touting a poll that showed Mr. Kasich running stronger than Mr. Trump in a showdown with presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton in battleground states.

“They confirm what we said throughout the campaign: John Kasich was the very best candidate to defeat Hillary Clinton,” Mr. Weaver said in the email.

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