Sen. Ted Cruz will audition for casino billionaire Sheldon Adelson and his faithful followers of the Republican Jewish Coalition next week.
The arch conservative second place Republican presidential candidate will speak to the Adelson Primary, aka the Spring Leadership Meeting of the Republican Jewish Coalition, on April 9 at Adelson's Venetian Resort and Casino in Las Vegas.
The billionaire's reported favorite, Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, crashed and burned last month so he's is looking at Cruz as an alternative to fellow billionaire Donald Trump.
When the reality television star and real estate mogul appeared before the group in December he managed to insult them by telling them they won't support him because he doesn't need their money. Adding insult to injury he told them they shared a common trait – hondlers, people who knew how to make deals "like you folks." Many in the room and beyond saw that as peddling an old anti-Semitic trope.
They even booed Trump when he refused to commit to recognizing Jerusalem as the undivided capital of Israel, a position he's since changed. He also has said he would be neutral in negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians, something that turns off Adelson, an outspoken opponent of Palestinian statehood.
Cruz has reportedly been a favorite of Dr. Miriam Adelson but contributions have been small by family standards. Cruz, despite his hardline pro-Likud, anti-Muslim rhetoric and talk about carpet bombing ISIS, is unpopular among the vast majority of American Jews, although fringe groups like the Zionist Organization of America and many evangelicals like him. He has shown very little traction among centrist and independent voters. His greatest appeal seems to be that he's not Donald Trump.
Cruz presents a problem for RJC. The cornerstone of his campaign has been his bitter attacks on the "Washington cartel" and the Republican establishment, which is just what the organization represents.
The Adelsons sunk more than $100 million into the 2012 election, mostly with the losing efforts of Newt Gingrich and Mitt Romney. This year they've apparently been holding back until they're sure who the party nominee will be.
So much money and not sure where to go.