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Your politics briefing: New NY poll, a 'Godfather' hit

Republican presidential candidate Texas Sen. Ted Cruz speaks

Republican presidential candidate Texas Sen. Ted Cruz speaks to supporters during a campaign event in San Diego on April 11, 2016. Photo Credit: AP

Update on Cruz: Trump’s a lousy businessman

Ted Cruz unloaded a harsh attack Tuesday on a core belief of Donald Trump’s fan base — that he’s a business genius — and likened his tactics to those of a mobster.

Alluding to the growing problems in Trump’s campaign, which include getting out-organized and outfoxed dealing with state parties in battles for delegates, Cruz said on Glenn Beck’s radio show, “It appears he can’t run a lemonade stand.”

Cruz ripped Trump as a bully who encourages violence, citing reports that his supporters were publishing home addresses of Colorado delegates and threatening to make public the hotel room numbers of Republican National Convention delegates.

“Donald needs to understand he’s not Michael Corleone,” Cruz said, referring to the mob boss in “The Godfather” films. “The presidency should not be La Cosa Nostra. ... Donald keeps hiring people with records of dirty tricks, of lies and of threats to violence.” (Audio clip here.)

Ryan: No means no, No, NO

When House Republicans couldn’t get along last year, they decided Rep. Paul Ryan was the answer and made him Speaker of the House. The party’s worsening fissures in the year of Trump have some hoping he can be a unifying figure again.

Not gonna happen, Ryan said Tuesday. “I will not allow my name to be placed in nomination,” Ryan said. “And it will not be me. I don’t know how I can be clearer than that. ... It should be someone who actually wants to be president or is running for president.” (Video here.)

That’s what’s called a Shermanesque statement.

Then again, he had said he didn’t want to be speaker.

Clinton, Trump overshoot

Newsday columnist Dan Janison finds both New York front-runners stretching the truth lately.

Hillary Clinton has been depicting Bernie Sanders’ Vermont as a major home base for illegal gun trafficking into New York. It is not. Far more weapons come from Virginia, where Gov. Terry McAuliffe, a close Clinton ally, has been criticized for compromises with the gun lobby.

And as for Trump’s tantrums over a “rigged” and “crooked” delegate-selection process, them’s the rules — and in his business dealings, Trump often brags of using complex rules, including bankruptcy laws, to his advantage.

Meanwhile, BuzzFeed’s Andrew Kaczynski unearthed a quote oft-tweeted by Trump in recent years: “You have to learn the rules of the game. And then you have to play better than anyone else.”

The day on the trail

Clinton said she has no apologies for playing the “gender card” on pay parity, Newsday’s Emily Ngo reports.

“If talking about equal pay and paid leave and more opportunities for women and girls is playing the gender card, then deal me in,” she said at a Times Square event marking Equal Pay Day.

John Kasich, at the Women’s National Republican Club headquarters in Manhattan, said he can lead his party “out of a path of darkness.” Newsday’s Laura Figueroa covered his speech.

Trump treated a crowd of 5,000 in upstate Rome to aFestivus-like airing of grievances about the GOP delegate-selection process. Sanders, in Syracuse, said if corporate greed isn’t held back, “this younger generation will likely have a lower standard of living than their parents did.” Yancey Roy and Michael Gormley have those stories for Newsday.

Trump women on Trump, women

Trump’s family joined him on a CNN town hall, and the answers on how he treats women were comforting, and not so much. Daughter Ivanka: “He always taught me that there wasn’t anything I couldn’t do.” Wife Melania: “If they attack him, he will attack back, no matter who you are.”

They stump among us

Sanders plans a rally at Washington Square Park in Manhattan’s Greenwich Village. Clinton appears at the Rev. Al Sharpton’s National Action Network convention at the Sheraton Hotel on Seventh Avenue in midtown. Cruz and his wife, Heidi, are doing a CNN town hall in the city.

Trumperstorm watch in Patchogue

Patchogue Mayor Paul Pontieri is urging residents to prepare for rallies, protests and a heavy security presence when Trump attends a Suffolk Republican fundraiser there Thursday night.

Pontieri said residents should expect several blocked streets after noon, parking hassles and crowding in their local restaurants, Newsday’s Deon J. Hampton reports.

The mayor asked residents and protesters to be mindful of their actions and behavior, remarking that “when this is all over, this is going to be a reflection on the community.”

What else is happening:

  • Not an endorsement, but President Barack Obama hopes that someday people will be “astonished ... there was ever a time when a woman had never sat in the Oval Office” ...
  • Sanders supporters are being accused by Democratic leaders and the Clinton campaign of harassing superdelegates, The Washington Post reports ...
  • Are presidential campaigns too long? Clinton wished hers a happy one-year anniversary ...
  • Trump and Clinton lead in another New York primary poll ...
  • Some high-profile Republicans are likely to stay away from the Cleveland convention ...
  • Clinton and Trump were certified as winners of Missouri’s close primaries by less than 2,000 votes each ...

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