Super Tuesday, undoubtedly the biggest day of primary season, has come and gone. More delegates were won yesterday than have been or will be won on any other day leading up to the RNC and DNC conventions in July. Super Tuesday is typically a good predictor of who the General Election nominees will be due to the fact that it is a relatively national election. Let’s examine the big winners and losers from today’s action.
There was never any real doubt, but it is now unequivocally certain that we will have our first female Presidential candidate running in the General Election this fall. The former Secretary of State swept Sanders throughout the South, dominating the minority vote and ending up winning 7 of the 11 states voting. Notably, Clinton now holds substantially more delegates over Sanders than President Obama held over her after Super Tuesday in 2008.
Perhaps even more notably, Clinton was able to recreate her 2008 base of support amongst white southerners. While she continued her dominance over Sanders in the minority category, she was also able to perform strongly amongst rural whites in the southern states. This is good news for Clinton supporters, as it shows she should be able to patch together a diverse coalition of supporters when the General Election rolls around. This is in stark contrast to her failed 2008 bid, when then-Senator Obama, not Clinton, repeatedly beat her amongst black voters.
With the nomination all but secured, expect Clinton to begin to look over the primary election and fine-tune her message to attract independents and Moderate Republicans disillusioned with the boisterous, xenophobic, and apparently unsure who/what the KKK is GOP front-runner (more on this later). The strategy could pay off when the General Election rolls around. It is important to remember that despite Trump’s pool of support, he has an even bigger pool of people who deplore him for Clinton to tap.
My gawd. I swear if you would have told me two years ago that after Super Tuesday Donald Trump would be celebrating a series of massive wins while Governor Chris Christie (then considered to be a favorite to win the nomination) stood solemnly behind him begging for a VP spot on his ticket??? The jig is levitating, man.
Trump carried 7 states, with Ted Cruz carrying 3 and Marco Rubio limping to an incredibly disappointing Super Tuesday win total of 1 state. Perhaps most astounding about Trump’s success was the diversity of his support amongst GOP voters. Trump dominated nearly every Republican voting demographic, even the Christian conservatives throughout the Bible Belt, long thought to be Cruz’s strong suit.
Trump now holds triple the amount of delegates as his nearest rival, Cruz. At this point, Trump is definitely considered the front-runner for the nomination, much to the vexation of the Republican Establishment. Rubio now faces an absolute must win on the 15th in his home state of Florida and Kasich now faces must wins in his home state of Ohio and the surrounding Midwestern states voting in the coming weeks.
At this point, the only thing that can seemingly stop Trump from rolling to the nomination is either: A. All other Republicans drop out except for Rubio or B. The other candidates all hang around and garner just enough support to deny Trump an outright majority of delegates heading into the nominating convention. This would, of course, lead to a contested convention that will be the political equivalent to the 2004 Pacers-Pistons brawl. B is definitely the more likely scenario to unfold, should we see the Trump train stopped.
Notably, the GOP voters who widely did NOT support Trump were white-collar, affluent Republicans who are highly educated (these voters overwhelmingly backed Rubio and Kasich). This is fantastic news for Clinton. With Trump’s unfavorable ratings still sky high, you can rest assured that she will begin to try to attract many of the white-collar, educated professionals that usually lean to the right but are turned off by Trump’s bombastic demagoguery and racism.
Despite the fact that there is plenty more analysis to be had, I’ve written wayyy too much for one post already. If you’re interested in further reading for all things election/politics in general, I strongly suggest RealClearPolitics.com. Oh, one more thing! For all of my fellow North Carolinians, our primary takes place the 15th with early voting beginning the 3rd. Be sure to get out and vote in whichever primary election you identify the most with.