Winners and Losers: 2016 Super Tuesday

rubio_orange_600pxIt is now apparent that we are heading towards a brokered convention, with Trump unable to win the required majority to clinch the nomination outright and the other candidates — Rubio, Cruz, Kasich, and Carson — unable to become the viable second alternative and unwilling to concede the election for fear of potentially inflating Trump’s numbers.

Meanwhile, on the Democratic side of the fence, while Clinton did predictably well in the “Solid South” it seems as if Bernie Sanders is far from done.

Next elections are as follows:

Saturday, March 5th
Puerto Rico
Tuesday, March 8th
Saturday, March 12th
American Samoa
District of Columbia
Tuesday, March 15th (winner take all)
North Carolina
Northern Marianas

So here it goes, your Winners and Losers on Super Tuesday:


Texas Senator Ted Cruz:  The man finished 3rd… and now is 2nd in the delegate count.  Texas was his firewall if the grand strategy of the SEC Firewall did not pan out (it didn’t).  So wait — if the outer defenses failed and Cruz had to fall back to the keep, why is this such a win?  Cash on hand — Cruz has $25 million in his back pocket right now.  Who has the second most?  Jeb Bush (still) at $24 million… stay tuned on that front.

Florida Senator Marco Rubio:  Let’s face it — conventional wisdom said he should have been clobbered.  Absolutely destroyed.  Instead, Rubio almost pulled off nabbing Virginia by a whisker, and did finally pulled down a win in Minnesota.  Super Tuesday was not supposed to be his best showing… and Rubio still managed to place himself just a hair above Cruz in most instances (and in other instances — notably Virginia — well beyond).  Rubio’s primary problem at this point?  Money… at $5 million, Rubio needs a shot in the arm to capitalize on Tuesday’s storm.

Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney:  The anti-Trump #NeverTrump drumbeat has found its champion.  Tax records?  Nice…

Delegate Tim Hugo:  Signed on to Rubio early, sowed the wind, reaped the whirlwind.  Well played…

PWC Chairman Corey Stewart:  Stewart’s endorsement of Trump was a masterstroke.  Why?  For any number of reasons: (1) Stewart makes Trump respectable, (2) Trump’s positions on immigration are probably more stringent than Stewart’s, (3) Stewart obtains a natural statewide constituency that (4) will serve him well when he runs for governor in 2017.  There is no downside to Stewart’s endorsement of Trump… not to mention the fact that everywhere Trump is weak — life, free trade, etc. — Corey Stewart has impeccable bona fides.

Rubio Supporters:  Who would have thought there were so many of ’em in Virginia?!


Serial Bankrupter Donald J. “Small Hands” Trump:  Trump’s fascisti were out telling folks that he was in the high-40s heading into Super Tuesday.  Oops… still in the mid-30s with notable exception (Taxachusetts).  Super Tuesday was supposed to be a KO night for Trump… and even though he pulled down seven, he did none of these with majorities — only mere pluralities in a five-candidate race.  Still, seven proportional balloting states isn’t that bad after all… it’s just not the heroic stomp out his staff was selling folks.  So why is this a push?  Two reasons: (1) Trump still only holds a plurality — but not a majority — of the projected delegates, and (2) none of his contenders show much sign of bowing out.

Ohio Governor John Kasich:  The reason why Rubio lost Virginia, without question.  Still, if Kasich can pull down Ohio?  Only feeds the brokered convention narrative and denies Trump the nomination.  Slan abhalie..

Dr. Ben Carson:  No one is going to attack you.

The Constitution Party/The Libertarian Party:  Assume for a moment that Trump wins the nomination.  Assume also for a moment that the #NeverTrump camp successfully exits the Grand Old Party.  Assume likewise that this new coalition of conservatives, classical liberals, lowercase-l libertarians, and so forth now go in search of a new home nationwide.  Where do they go?  The Libertarian Party would be an ideal home, as the contest between an avowed nationalist and an avowed socialist would certainly make the individualist argument incredibly compelling.  Yet as Erick Erickson and others have argued, the Constitution Party might be a more practical fit — all 50 states, ballot access, and a platform perhaps more welcoming of evangelicals and social conservatives than the LP might be able to accommodate.  The question remains whether or not either party is able (or willing) to accept the influx.


The Republican Party of Virginia:  The “loyalty oath” made Virginia the laughingstock of the nation.  Now that 1,000,000 Virginians voted in the primary?  Well, I’m sure someone will attempt to take the credit for the sun rising in the east and setting in the west as well… but no amount of track covering by claiming success they never generated is going to matter one iota.  Trump’s staff will remember who pulled what strings, who threatened whom, what calls were placed, etc.  Absolutely needless and senseless controversy that could have been utterly avoided if we had gone the route of a convention… which today now appears as if it would have been the absolute right call, identifying core activists and affording the opportunity to avoid the potential split should Trump emerge as the nominee.  Terribly shortsighted to have done otherwise…

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie:  If you haven’t read this from the Washington Post, do so immediately.  Best line?

“His were the eyes of a man who has gazed into the abyss, and the abyss gazed back, and then he endorsed the abyss.”

Christie needs a hug.  I’m sure the White House might oblige.

The Conservative Movement:  A host of op-ed writers, talking heads, thinkers, prognosticators, social media types, new media types, everyone dumped on Donald Trump.  What have we discovered?  Not only is the conservative movement a minority in its own party, but that the movement (so-called) is extremely limited to a handful of Beltway insiders combined with a smattering of lone sentinels across the country.  Conservative leaders no longer lead a movement — the movement has shifted to populist outrage and follows different stars.  The nativists are on the rise… let’s face it, when David Duke feels comfortable with the new face of the Republican Party?  We’re in trouble — because conservatives have generationally failed to pass the torch on to the next.

Other Conservative Leaders Who Didn’t Repudiate Trump:  Collectively, shame on you all for not having the moral fortitude to call out nativism in the ranks when it was small.  Now that Trump is on the cusp of winning the Republican nomination?  Absurd… absolutely absurd…

Cruz Supporters in Virginia:  I really hesitate to put this in here, because I have so many good friends in this camp.  Still, to listen to them after the fact almost despondent that evangelicals were splitting their vote (and in some cases, voting for Trump) hurt to hear.

Kentucky Senator Rand Paul:  …has anybody here seen my old friend Rand?   Can you tell me where he’s gone?

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So did we get it right?  Miss anyone?  Improvements in the comments section below!

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