RNC spokesman: GOP will support nominee '100 percent'
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Republican National Committee communications director Sean Spicer said Thursday that Republicans would embrace their nominee "100 percent," even if it was Donald TrumpDonald TrumpCombating opioid epidemic, repealing ObamaCare will hurt the cause Money doesn't buy elections and elections aren't rigged. Period. Ongoing wiretapping saga raises host of legal questions MORE, insisting it'd likely happen before the convention this summer.
"I still think that we'll go to Cleveland with the nominee," Spicer said during an interview on CNN's "Situation Room," adding, "If we don't, then we will prepare like we do for every other contingency."
"We'll have an open, transparent, democratic process where our delegates that were elected will go there and elect a nominee, and we will go out united and win in November," he added.
Spicer noted either Donald Trump, Ted CruzTed CruzRepublicans giving Univision the cold shoulder: report How 'Big Pharma' stifles pharmaceutical innovation AIPAC must reach out to President Trump MORE or John Kasich needs to secure 1,237 delegates to become the nominee, saying, "When that happens, we will embrace that person."
Trump is the closest to the nomination, with 678 delegates according to The Associated Press, while Cruz has 413 and is less likely to secure the needed number before the convention in July.
It's mathematically impossible for Kasich, at 143, to secure the needed delegates before the convention. He won his home state of Ohio on Tuesday and is aiming for a contested convention in Cleveland.
Speaker Paul RyanPaul RyanNewsmax CEO: 'Trump still the winner after Ryan plan fails' Conservative media struggles with new prominence under Trump Report: Ryan pleaded on one knee for ObamaCare repeal vote MORE (R-Wis.), the ceremonial chairman of the convention, acknowledged earlier Thursday that there's an increasing likelihood the nominee would be selected in Cleveland.
"Mathematically, every day that goes by it becomes a little bit more likely," Spicer conceded on CNN.
A group of prominent conservatives met earlier in the day Thursday to discuss the possibility of a floor fight at the convention if a "unity ticket" doesn't emerge before then to thwart Trump, the controversial front-runner.
They also raised the prospect of backing a third-party candidate to Trump and Clinton.
Spicer acknowledged that a third-party alternative to Trump or Democratic front-runner Hillary ClintonHillary Rodham ClintonDemocrat in district won by Trump running for governor Combating opioid epidemic, repealing ObamaCare will hurt the cause Money doesn't buy elections and elections aren't rigged. Period. MORE would "almost" guarantee Clinton's election, calling on Republicans to unite behind whomever is their nominee.