Former Hewlett-Packard CEO and GOP candidate Carly Fiorina endorsed Texas Sen. Ted Cruz for the Republican presidential nomination Wednesday.
The businesswoman-turned-politician spoke out in support of Cruz during a rally at Miami Dade College in Florida. She revealed that she had voted for him last Tuesday in the Virginia primary.
“I walked into the ballot box and I looked at the ballot and I saw my own name on the ballot. It was kind of a thrill,” she told the crowd. “But then I checked the box for Ted Cruz, and I’m here to tell you why.”
Fiorina praised Cruz as a leader and reformer who would take on the Washington establishment, and she characterized the frontrunners in each party — businessman Donald Trump and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton — as beholden to the status quo.
“Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton are two sides of the same coin,” she said. “They’re not going to reform the system. They are the system.”
The former presidential candidate said Clinton has made millions of dollars by selling access and influence from the inside and that Trump has made billions of dollars buying people like her.
Ted Cruz and former Republican presidential candidate Carly Fiorina pose for photographs during a campaign rally in Miami on Wednesday. (Photo: Paul Sancya/AP)
“We’re going to have to beat Donald Trump at the ballot box, and the only guy who can beat Donald Trump is Ted Cruz,” she said.
Fiorina applauded Cruz’s consistency on the issues, saying he’s always been a “constitutional conservative” who didn’t care if he would get “invited to the cocktail parties” in Washington.
“Ted Cruz is a fearless fighter for our constitutional rights. He has spent his life protecting Americans’ God-given liberties, and he has always stood by his word,” Fiorina said in a statement. “Unlike the status-quo political class in D.C., Ted Cruz didn’t cower when he got to Washington — he stood unequivocally for the American people. I know Ted, and he’ll do the same as president.”
Cruz praised Fiorina as a principled leader and a woman of faith whose voice strengthens his campaign.
“Her story embodies the promise that in America anyone can start as a secretary and become a Fortune 50 CEO. Carly speaks the truth with courage, doesn’t back down to the Washington power brokers, and terrifies Hillary and the Democrats,” Cruz said in a statement. “We are blessed to have her support, and together I am confident we will continue to unite conservatives so that every American has the opportunity to achieve the unimaginable.”
Carly Fiorina joins Sen. Ted Cruz during a campaign rally in Miami on Wednesday. (Photo: Paul Sancya/AP)
In early February, Cruz criticized Disney’s ABC and the Republican National Committee for cutting Fiorina from a debate in New Hampshire ahead of the state’s primary. She was the only major candidate still in the race at the time who was not invited to participate, even though she outperformed Ohio Gov. John Kasich and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie in the Iowa caucuses.
The former technology executive thanked Cruz for “standing for the fair debate the American people deserve.”
Despite strong debate performances, Fiorina struggled to gain traction for her White House bid in the then-overcrowded GOP field. She suspended her campaign on Feb. 10 after a disappointing finish in New Hampshire.