Donald Trump wins seven of eleven states and some people call the race over. Yet Super Tuesday’s results aren’t as clear as some would like to believe. Number of states won is not the same as number of delegates won—and that latter category is what determines the ultimate winner.
It appears that Trump now has 316 of the 1237 needed to win the nomination, while Cruz is at 226 in his delegate count. That’s not exactly a blowout at this point in the race. Rubio trails with 106. Kasich and Carson are not really in the game any more, despite what their campaigns say.
Cruz got the biggest delegate prize of the night, his home state of Texas. There are some more primaries on Saturday, and they are possible wins for Cruz as well—Kansas, Louisiana, and Kentucky. We’ll see if he can capitalize on those.
There were disappointments for Cruz last night, chief of which would be Arkansas going for Trump by about 2% over Cruz. But he did pick up Oklahoma and Alaska in addition to Texas.
Rubio won Minnesota and thought he might take Virginia, but fell short. His path to the nomination might be over, but he will pin all his hopes on his home state of Florida and try to believe a victory there will be the springboard into future successes.
However, to me at least, it seems it’s either going to be Trump or Cruz and that Cruz’s only hope is that Rubio will bow to the inevitable and graciously withdraw now. I realize that conclusion will raise the ire of Rubio’s backers, but I honestly don’t see how he can win. If he’s staking everything on a brokered convention, I think that is a mistake, and rather unlikely.
Trump has turned this election cycle into a mess and has badly damaged the entire Republican brand. Some will object that the Republican establishment already damaged the brand (with which I won’t completely disagree), but he has found a way to pull the wool over the eyes of angry voters, somehow convincing them that he is a viable candidate and someone to be trusted.
The latest rumor in the rumor mill is that if Trump gets the nomination, there will be two new entries into the race, former NYC mayor Michael Bloomberg—who will draw votes from the Democrats—and an as-yet-unnamed conservative who will bolt the Republican party in an attempt to coalesce all those who will remain unreconciled to Trump. I am one of those.
Under that scenario, with four candidates, it’s possible that no one will be able to get the majority of the electoral votes, thus throwing the decision into the House of Representatives, as was done in the elections of 1800 and 1824. Republicans control the House, thereby making the final choice either Trump or the conservative alternative.
Interesting scenario. How feasible is it? I don’t think it’s likely, but I wouldn’t rule it out or think that it would spell the end of the republic. We’re already near that end with either a Clinton or Trump presidency. At least this scenario would offer the possibility of avoiding both of those outcomes.
But in the meantime, we are still in the primary season and, despite dire predictions Trump has it all sewed up, I’m not ready to accept that nightmare. I still believe Cruz has a narrow path he can follow, especially if Trump continues to shoot himself in the foot with his out-of-control comments and actions. There’s still time for people to wake up and see him for what he really is—the ultimate political insider with illusions of grandeur.