While there may still remain a few more votes to be counted, it’s now quite obvious that the results from yesterday’s “Super Tuesday” primaries have identified the “hoppers, skippers and stumblers”. Herewith a rundown with some editorial notes.
Hoppers and Skippers
No one was a bigger winner than Hillary Rodham Clinton who basically “ran the table”; i.e. winning all five of the contests in which she was entered, and that included the winner-take-all states of Florida and Ohio. Her lead now in delegates won and super-delegates committed to her is essentially insurmountable.
Next up, Ohio governor John Kasich. Not only did he win the primary in his home state, but picked up some additional delegates out of the contests in Illinois (4) and North Carolina (9). Combine those with the 66 delegates he collected in winner-take-all Buckeyeland and his total clobbered that of Ted Cruz who garnered 27 delegates in North Carolina, yet still considered himself to be the best alternative to Primadonald, his widely-held general lack of popularity notwithstanding.
That giant sucking sound you hear emanating from Florida was produced by Marco Rubio being vacuumed off the face of the US political map. In his run at the GOP nomination, he chose not to seek re-election to the Senate so that power base will soon be a thing of his past. Tether that to his abysmal showing in the primaries and you can stick a fork in his political future because it’s done!!(*)
That brings us to Bernie Sanders who had hoped to ride his surprising win in Michigan to similar victories throughout the Rust Belt. That did not happen as HRC was a clear winner in three of the five contests in which the two were pitted against each other.
Primadonald, with five out of six wins yesterday, would have definitely made it into the Hoppers and Skippers section had it not been for his loss in Ohio. But, that setback gave a boost to the anti-Trump movement along with his loss of delegates elsewhere to Kasich and Cruz. As set forth in the last blog posted at this site, every delegate denied Primadonald makes it harder for him to reach the minimum number required to cinch the GOP nomination. In that event, a brokered or contested convention becomes a distinct possibility, and that may indeed be where we are headed (**).
In reaction to this just cited scenario, Primadonald has intimated that if he owns a plurality of delegates, even if short of the minimum needed, and is denied the nomination, his supporters are likely to riot. Such a scenario, which the candidate has all but justified, goes hand-in-hand with the inflammatory language he has repeatedly used at his rallies for which he offers no apologies (***).
Acutely aware of the potential for all this inflicting long-term damage on the Republican “brand”, party leaders like Mitch McConnell and Paul Ryan have urged Primadonald to renounce violence and tone down his rhetoric. These exhortations are laughable on their face. Both of the two aforementioned have spent the last seven years demonizing President Obama, his policies, decisions and Progressives in general. Trump’s wretched excesses are a predictable outgrowth of this hate-speech.
Finally, as the primary season moves on, the GOP field has now been winnowed down to three with yet another debate set for the immediate future. Primadonald has announced that he will not participate, a particularly cowardly move since he can fully anticipate that both his opponents will have their “guns” aimed squarely at him, including an insistence that he finally provide details on how he’s going to actually bring to fruition, all the grandiose promises he has made to the nation. Of course, with Primadonald absent, Cruz and Kasich will have little choice but to go after each other. In that case, the run-for-cover real estate mogul would escape unscathed.
*Talk about a precipitous fall from grace: with his election to the US Senate, Rubio was featured on the cover of Time magazine as the “Republican savior”.
**See “A gathering storm”.
***Far from apologizing, Primadonald has offered to pay the legal fees that any of his supporters incur if arrested for physically assaulting a protester. That commitment is now playing out in real time as a member of his knuckle-dragging/mouthing breathing cult sucker-punched a protester who was under police escort being led out of a NC rally.