Cruz, who trails Trump in polls in both states, vowed a fierce campaign in California during a speech Saturday at the state Republican Party convention near San Francisco. His campaign had the most visible presence at the gathering of 1,000 party leaders and activists, with red-shirted Cruz volunteers collecting voters’ home and e-mail addresses, and Cruz stickers and signs ubiquitous in the convention hotel. In an office nearby, a dozen Cruz volunteers staffed a phone bank.
“Year after year y’all are used to being treated by Republicans like an ATM, to take your money and spend it in other states,” Cruz told more than 500 party activists. “Well I can tell you right now, we’re going to spend more money in California than we raise in California.”
Cruz said his campaign has plans to compete in each of California’s 53 congressional districts, each of which will give three delegates to the top vote-getter. The state awards other delegates, too, for a total of 172; a candidate needs 1,237 delegates to win the nomination outright.
“It is going to be a battle on the ground, district by district, by district,” he said.