Can he not run himself, as an independent?
Independent candidates for President file an application with the Secretary of State. The application must be submitted with a petition, and both documents must be filed no later than May 9, 2016. The petitions can be circulated beginning after March 1, 2016. For 2016, the petition must contain 79,939 signatures of registered voters who did not vote in the presidential primary of either party. The application must include the information about and signed consent from the candidate’s vice-presidential running mate. In addition to the petition and application, an independent candidate for President must provide signed, written statements of consent to be a presidential elector candidate from 38 presidential elector candidates (the number of presidential electors that federal law allocates to Texas). Forms are linked below and may be obtained from the Secretary of State’s office.
But I doubt Hillary would be too happy about his endorsement, nor would it help her.
not a chance that he'll endorse Clinton. if he's close to or has the number of delegates that he needs to win and the party gives the nomination to someone else, though, my guess is that he'll try to run anyway.
which leads to an interesting question : can he actually run as an independent that late in the game? i hadn't thought to ask that before.
He won't run as an independent, it would cost him too much money and even he knows it is a lost cause. He will do his best to make sure supporters don't vote for the GOP candidate though. I believe he will encourage then to stay home or write in his name.
It will NOT be too late for a third party candidacy. If Trump is smart, he can see what will happen in Cleveland before he ever gets there. His team can being to make ready for the third party effort and announce it on Friday morning right there in Cleveland with his delegates present and cheering. They can begin the petition drive in some 40 states to get on the ballot and in the ones whose deadline has already passed, he can reach out to tiny parties with ballot access to see if they want to nominate him as their standard bearer and get fifty times the votes they might normally get.
OK, then, let's try just one, but big state: Texas. Do you think the Libertarians are going to kick Johnson off the ballot? Take a look at the rules in Texas and tell me how how this would be done without violating the election laws. Pay careful attention to the law regarding how a party selects its candidate.
Good call since Texas is the most problematic. And i admit that is the one I would also be most concerned about. But even without Texas Trump can still make a very big splash in the nation.
btw - do you have a list of what parties have ballot access in Texas?
Currently, the Libertarian Party and the Green Party are the only minor parties in Texas that have ballot access.
Most states have "sore loser" laws. If that doesn't knock him out, the deadlines will. Here is how it works in Texas, for example:
At first I thought, yeah, his whole candidacy is designed to paint the GOP and their candidates he's beating in a bad light, insuring that Hillary would win against any of those candidates in November, including himself.