If he had to choose between Texas Sen. Ted Cruz and Trump for the Republican nomination, Carter chuckled, “I think I would choose Trump, which may surprise some of you.”
(It did, judging by the loud laughter from the audience.)
“The reason is, Trump has proven already he’s completely malleable,” Carter explained. “I don’t think he has any fixed (positions) he’d go the White House and fight for. On the other hand, Ted Cruz is not malleable. He has far right wing policies he’d pursue if he became president.”
Meanwhile, Carter knows all about the highs and lows of Inauguration Day. After defeating incumbent Gerald Ford in 1976, he and his wife, Rosalynn, charmed much of the country when they alighted from their limousine and walked the post-ceremony parade route from the Capitol to the White House in frigid temperatures. Four years later, on Jan. 20, 1981, he took part in the peaceful transition of power to Ronald Reagan, who’d defeated him in his bid for a second term.
The former first couple then returned to Georgia, where they created the Carter Center and pursued what is widely regarded as one of the most important and influential post-presidential legacies. In 2002, the former president was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for “for his decades of untiring effort to find peaceful solutions to international conflicts, to advance democracy and human rights, and to promote economic and social development.”