Third Party & Independents Archives

Will the GOP Finally Play Footsie With Trump?

As Fivethirtyeight was noting that Ted Cruz beat his polling expectations, and that Trump barely met his, Trump himself was showing what a President Trump press conference might look like. In the rather regal looking surroundings in Palm Beach - more Versailles than West Wing - he was generous towards Ted Cruz, affably dismissive of Marco Rubio, and professionally critical of Hillary Clinton, with a few jabs about her possible legal troubles tossed in. But above all, he was The-Great-Unifier. That’s in his own words, of course. Which may now be his main theme moving on from Super Tuesday.

So will his Trumpness be receiving notice of the resignations of Rubio, Cruz, Kasich, and Carson? Not likely. Super Tuesday seems to be setting up to give just enough results to every candidate - save Carson who is on his own mission at this point - to continue for at least a few weeks, or months, longer.

Cruz, who was feisty in his speech, gets Texas and Oklahoma. That makes three for the Texas senator. Rubio seems - at this point - to maybe, finally get a win for goodness sake, sweeping Minnesota with about 36% of the vote. Ok, that's not a sweep, but it's an actual, honest-to-God win. If his numbers hold up as more votes are counted, that is. And Kasich is close in Vermont, behind by just a few percentage points. Why that could be the start of a huge Kasich wave - from Columbus to Cincinnati.

And finally, Sanders jumped out quickly to give an on-form speech to a raging crowd in his home state. He looked better than he has in the last week or so. Did he know what was coming? Colorado, Oklahoma, Minnesota, and of course, Vermont felt the Bern, and Sanders can argue he's still very much in the race. Even if Hillary is one solid step closer to sealing what will very likely be her nomination as the Democratic presidential candidate.

So the Democratic race is still a race - even if the outcome is pretty much settled. But the GOP race is still chaotic. Trump by most polling standards, should have been declared the unquestioned leader by now. But the GOP establishment can't bring themselves to do that. Or can't be seen publicly to do that. Not just yet. Lines have been drawn in the sand, and for goodness sake, you've got to let a few weeks go by before you brush away those lines and step across to make a deal with Donald. A few notable exceptions aside.

Trump should win the nomination. The question is, whether his adopted party will let him do so without trying to stick an expensive shoe under his expensively tailored trouser legs as he strides forward to accept. To avoid doing that, the GOP will have to craft a narrative that Trump will not be an electoral disaster. And convince voters and the media that they mean it. There is still time, but not much, to still play footsie with Donald Trump. Either way.

Posted by AllardK at March 3, 2016 6:13 PM
Comment #403202

“That makes three for the Texas senator.”

I guess the win in Alaska for Cruz doesn’t count.

Posted by: Royal Flush at March 3, 2016 6:22 PM
Comment #403221

“As Fivethirtyeight was noting that Ted Cruz beat his polling expectations, and that Trump barely met his..”

What? Have you actually looked a the Fivethirtyeight data? It shows Trump exceeding his target overall (114%) and exceeding his target in 8 of the 11 Super Tuesday contests. Cruz on the other hand has failed to meet his target overall (61%) and on Super Tuesday, he only met but did not exceed his target in three contests. So, Trump beats his target in 8 of 11 events and Cruz fails in 8 of 11 events, yet somehow, Trump had a bad night and Cruz had a good night. Jeeez, up is down and black is white.

Posted by: Rich at March 4, 2016 5:51 PM
Comment #403224


It’s just another day for the deluded mind of a Watchblog conservative.

Posted by: Warren Porter at March 4, 2016 7:22 PM
Comment #403238

Pot, meet kettle.

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