Wednesday, February 24, 2016

The Campaign Trail 2016: The Republicans in Nevada

The Republicans had their showdown in Nevada last night, which was an important night for everyone still in the race. The rumble in The Silver State was the final battle before the all important Super Tuesday where roughly half the necessary delegates for the Republican presidential nomination are up for grabs. Eleven states will be picking their Republican presidential delegates on March 1st.

The big winner in Nevada was the big winner of the night Donald Trump who, for the third time in a row, has decimated his opponents in his landslide victory. The big loser? Everyone else in the race. Nevada was the last chance for a candidate to show they could win against Trump before Super Tuesday. No one did this last night.

The second place winner in Nevada was Senator Marco Rubio. His second place win brought in roughly half the number of votes that Trump did over the course of the night. In the first four critical battles for the Republican nomination despite having come in second twice he hasn't had a single first place win.

The third place winner was Senator Ted Cruz. Outside of his first place win in Iowa, Cruz has consistently come in third. He usually ends up with almost the same amount as the second place finisher, but neither is even close to that coveted and all important first slot.

The fourth place winner was Ben Carson. Nevada ties with Iowa for his best performance in the presidential primaries so far, which isn't saying much. Especially since Carson would have needed more than four times the amount of votes than he received to have taken third from Cruz. Carson should have dropped out after New Hampshire and not a single performance since then has changed this.

And in last place is the last of the governors that is still in the race John Kasich. Despite his second place finish in New Hampshire, Kasich has performed poorly in every other contest so far and should now follow the other governors and suspend his campaign. The only challenger that Kasich appears to have in this election at this point is Carson where both are fighting each other to stay out of last place.

Trump needs to keep his momentum going into Super Tuesday. If he can take all eleven states the odds will be in his favor that he will be the Republican nominee for president. Rubio and Cruz need to somehow invigorate voters if they want to stay in this election. To stay relevant at this point, both need to secure a first place finish in at least four states each on Super Tuesday, if not more.

Tomorrow Trump will either have to take a huge misstep in the only Republican debate before Super Tuesday or Rubio and Cruz will have to somehow massively change viewer perception of them. The debate will be held on CNN and Telemundo starting at 8:30 EST.

Then one week from Nevada's vote yesterday, Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Georgia, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Texas, Vermont, and the Commonwealth of Virginia will all be holding Republican primaries or caucuses.

Also on March 1st, Colorado has opted to rescind their Republican caucus vote from being tied to the delegates that Colorado awards at the Republican National Convention meaning that the Colorado delegates will remain unpledged to any candidate until decided at the convention.

Wyoming and North Dakota will also have caucuses on Super Tuesday where their delegates remain unbound to any candidate.

For the next coverage of the Republican primaries return on February 29th for the pre-Super Tuesday coverage for both parties. For the next coverage of the Democratic primaries return on the 26th.

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