Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Donald Trump is a Terrible Choice in 2016

Trump in Janesville, WI - TMJ4
As the primary nears, I want to explain why I don't support Trump for the Republican nomination. Even though I'm going to a campaign event, my mind probably won't change. Donald Trump is touted as someone who has strong appeal among working-class white voters. His surrogates say that he can bring out dissatisfied Democrats and voters who are out of the political mainstream. They argue that it will be a revolutionary political coalition and that's why Trump should be the GOP nominee. Trump supporters subscribe to this theory, but I remain skeptical. I'm not saying Trump can't win, but he's at a serious disadvantage.

For one thing, Trump has never defeated Hillary Clinton in the RealClearPolitics polling average. Currently, Clinton has 50 percent while he only has 38.8 percent giving her a margin of 11.2 percentage points. The latest poll from CNN and ORC shows Clinton already wins a majority of voters. Most voters hold a negative opinion of Clinton, but they also do for Trump. Even 32 percent of registered Republicans view Trump unfavorably while only 19 percent of registered Democrats view Clinton unfavorably. While most party voters will fall behind their nominees, there will be some who vote for the opposing candidate or a third party. That's more likely among Republicans than Democrats. A few Trump supporters often say that the polls are "owned by Hillary" or something of the sort, but that simply isn't true. Polling firms become credible when data is accurate. Being biased has the potential to get elections wrong and severely damage the credibility of any firm.

Trump has trouble with minority groups that are important to win in a presidential election. The poll shows that 74 percent of nonwhite voters have an unfavorable view of Trump, as well as 53 percent of white voters. This spells disaster for him in many states and Clinton has the potential to win a victory bigger than Barack Obama's comfortable election in 2008. Just look at the southwest of the country where there is a large number of Hispanic voters. Colorado, New Mexico, and Nevada all went to Obama in both elections. Arizona has leaned Republican, but it could go to Trump if he loses more independent Hispanics. Then there's the black vote, which counts in most Midwest battleground states as well as some southern states like Georgia and Louisiana. Trump has disavowed support from Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke, but only after he stumbled when pressed with earlier questions. 

Trump also has problems with women. With the Wisconsin primary getting closer and closer, he did an interview with Milwaukee conservative radio host Charlie Sykes and it was heated. Sykes, who has now decided to endorse Ted Cruz, pressed the billionaire for his recent statements on Heidi Cruz. After a pro-Cruz super PAC (unaffiliated with his presidential campaign) released an ad attacking Melania Trump, the Donald responded by showing an unflattering photo of Cruz's wife. Trump believed that Cruz "started it" even though the organization that attacked his wife cannot legally coordinate with the Cruz presidential campaign. Sykes was hard on Trump for having no evidence to prove Cruz started the battle and all this conflict is going to do is make women less inclined to vote for Trump in November.

I don't see Trump as someone who will continue the legacy of Ronald Reagan when he's president. Reagan remains the largest influence on GOP policy proposals today for good reason. I don't believe we need a clone of the fortieth president, but it's foolish to think Trump is ideologically close to the Gipper. They are very far in terms of style and personality. Reagan's transformation from a Democrat to a Republican happened through research and intellectualism over a decade. Trump seemed to have transformed at the eleventh hour before 2016. His supporters claim that 2016 is going to be like 1980, but that's a lousy historical comparison. Reagan was leading against Jimmy Carter at this point in 1980, not getting destroyed by double-digits.

Trump's rhetoric in Wisconsin should raise eyebrows. When Governor Scott Walker endorsed Ted Cruz, the Donald responded by trashing Walker's record. When you're running in a Republican primary, it is unwise to attack politicians from your own party in the state. What's worse is how he attacked Walker. Trump criticized him for not raising taxes in the state and said, "Wisconsin has a lot of problems." Basically, he gave out talking points you would hear from a Madison liberal politician like the argument to continuously throw money at schools.

Several conservatives remain skeptical of Trump and there isn't a guarantee that they will rally behind him and invoke party loyalty. As political analyst Nate Silver has posted:
If you’re one of these ideological conservatives, it may even be in your best interest for Trump to lose in November. If Trump loses, especially by a wide margin, his brand of politics will probably be discredited, or his nomination might look like a strange, one-off “black swan” that you’ll be better equipped to prevent the next time around. You’ll have an opportunity to get your party back in 2020, and your nominee might stand a pretty decent chance against Clinton, who could be elected despite being quite unpopular because Trump is even less popular and who would be aiming for the Democratic Party’s fourth straight term in office.
Many conservative leaders might create their own third party campaign just to deny Trump the presidency. These leaders include prominent activist Erick Erickson, businessman Bob Fischer, and George W. Bush adviser Bill Wichterman. All this evidence points to Trump easily losing the election in November. Elections can easily change the future of our country and I see politics as an investment. Voting for a candidate is an investment I make and if that candidate is elected, I expect a return on my vote through the implementation of policies I support. Since Trump is unlikely to win in November, I will not vote for him on April 5 in the Wisconsin primary.

Saturday, March 26, 2016

Tuesday Confirmed What We Know

On Tuesday three states voted in the 2016 election. Arizona and Utah voted for both parties while Idaho was only in the Democratic race (the Republicans held their primary on March 8 and Ted Cruz won by a landslide). I wasn't interested in predicting or hyping up Tuesday because I knew the states would only reinforce what we know about the 2016 election. The night wasn't spectacular.

On the Republican side, Donald Trump easily won Arizona and Cruz easily won Utah. Arizona was already a winner-take-all state, so he received all 58 delegates. The Republican Party of Utah has a special rule that if one candidate wins a majority of votes, then he or she will receive all the delegates. Cruz achieved this important goal, so he won all forty delegates. Trump, who is very unpopular among Mormons, ended up behind John Kasich in the state's results.

Are there any big takeaways from the results? It is appears that Trump has broader support than Cruz does. Arizona leans Republican in the presidential election (the last time a Democrat won the state was Bill Clinton in 1996) and there are more independents there. Cruz is loved in heavily rural states that many would consider "flyover country." So far, Cruz has only performed strongly in the west. Nine of the eight states he's won are all west of Mississippi river (the lone exception is Maine). It is possible that Cruz is running out of states to win. That's why Wisconsin will be such an important test.

It is still too far off to say that Trump will win a majority of delegates. I think the Wisconsin primary will provide some clarity if he wins it. Marco Rubio dropping out has helped Kasich and (especially) Cruz against the Donald. Kasich will continue to campaign in the Midwest, but I think he will also be competitive in the remaining northeastern states and those on the Atlantic coast. If Kasich performs strongly there while Cruz continues to pick-up western states, then Trump will have trouble winning a majority.

As for the Democrats, we see the same repetitive election analysis. Hillary Clinton won Arizona, a state where there are many Hispanic Democrats. It once again proves that Bernie Sanders has trouble with appealing to minorities. Sanders won Utah and Idaho. It's fascinating to consider that Sanders and Cruz are winning the exact same states. That isn't to say Trump is hated among rural voters. The backbone of his base comes from counties in the backcountry of most states. Trump and Cruz are simply competing for them. We can easily deduce that rural voters in places far away from major economic and political centers are the ones who are the most angry with the political establishment and want dramatic change.

Sanders won last night because he received more delegates than Clinton did, but most people still believe that Democratic race is coming to a close. Go back to the reasons I gave as to why Cruz may have trouble in the future. Sanders is popular in western states, but they aren't large and don't have a lot of delegates. Clinton already has a big lead thanks to many wins in the south and the super delegates. She is expected to reach a majority of delegates for the Democratic convention in April and it is fair to dismiss the Vermont senator no matter how large his crowds are.

Part of why the Democratic race seems so guaranteed is that Clinton is repeating what President Obama did when he ran for president in 2008. Clinton's lead with the delegates is powerful and it is almost impossible for Sanders to overcome it. He needs landslide wins in all the upcoming states and no one sees that coming. The west might present Sanders with some more delegates, but he needs more than that. His best hope is in the states surrounding the Great Lakes, but Clinton has proven that she still has the advantage there. This is why Wisconsin will be just as important for the Democrats as it will be for the Republicans.

Thursday, March 24, 2016

My Experience at a John Kasich Town Hall

At the Kasich bus - John Graber
The 2016 presidential election is bearing down on my home state of Wisconsin. The ads touting political records, candidate backgrounds, and firing vicious attacks are being played over the main news channels. The candidates are now campaigning across the state. It is my intention to see all three Republican candidates. On Wednesday, I attended a John Kasich town hall at the Crowne Plaza in Wauwatosa.

I did not get to the event right away, so when I arrived it was so crowded that I was outside the door of the ballroom. Eventually, I was able to squeeze into the room and found a chair. I noticed that former Governor Tommy G. Thompson and Governor Scott Walker were behind the Ohio governor. It was clear from the start the Kasich loved talking about his record as governor: creating hundreds of thousands of jobs, slashing taxes, lowering economic regulations, and balancing the budget. He also talked a lot about his time in Congress when he was the budget chairman. It was clear that he prioritized economic issues over everything else. On the first balanced budget he proposed in 1989, which was strongly rejected by Congress, Kasich joked that the vote tally looked like the score when the Badgers defeat Ohio.

When question time arrived, it was clear many Kasich supporters disliked Donald Trump. Some told Kasich that they are voting for him because he's a man who stays positive. He simply responded that he prefers to stick to the issues and that if you want to make a difference and send a clear message to oppose the negativity of the election, then vote for him. One political science student, a Democrat, expressed her view that she likes him and will vote for him. She also wanted to know if he'd be willing to do a ticket with a Democrat as a form of unity or hire Democrats in his administration. He responded with a joke: "Are you available?" Afterward, I asked the student who she was supporting. She told me either Kasich or Bernie Sanders. It was clear that he was sticking with a positive message.

After the town hall, I was able to sneak around the back where his campaign bus was. I knew Kasich would being going through the back door to get into it, so I waited there to get a picture with him. Some other young Kasich supporters joined me, but when he arrived he said that he could only do one picture because he needed to get going. In an effort to be relatable to young people, the governor declared, "We're going to send the picture to Twenty One Pilots for their next music video!"

Overall, it was a very civil and informative event. I got a decent amount of information about what Kasich stands for and what he wants to do if he's president (at least with the economy and fiscal policy). There was no conflict during the town hall and everyone behaved respectfully. This is what politics and government should be about. I hope to see equally as much respect and discourse at upcoming events when I see Donald Trump and Ted Cruz.

Monday, March 21, 2016

Super Tuesday II's Results

Rubio gives his concession speech - Fox News Latino
I was busy over the weekend, so I was unable to post about the Super Tuesday II results earlier. By now, all of you know what happened. Hillary Clinton swept through the night winning every state (Florida, North Carolina, Ohio, Illinois, and Missouri). As for the Republican, Donald Trump won four of the five states while John Kasich won his home state of Ohio.

The worst news, in my opinion, is that Marco Rubio dropped out after losing in his home state of Florida. He also announced that he will not run for another term in the U.S. Senate this year, leaving the race in that state open and vulnerable. Rubio, who ran a campaign of optimism and policy before engaging Trump, politically miscalculated how big a threat the billionaire would be. Trump's was masterfully able to garner almost all the media attention. Rubio complained about this, but it was a hopeless effort. With the Trump hurricane bearing down on Florida, he scattered across his home to win the 99 winner-take-all delegates. In the end, the senator's support among Cuban-Americans and conservatives throughout the state only carried him Miami. Trump performed very well in the panhandle area. Many saw Rubio as a rising star in the Republican Party, but he won't have a job next year. I hope he has a future. Here's Rubio's concession speech:

For his part, John Kasich did win his home state of Ohio. Like Florida, it is a winner-take-all state and the governor was able to deny Trump 66 delegates. Kasich was very optimistic about the future and believes he will be the nominee. He cannot win a majority of delegates, but that doesn't mean it's impossible for him to win the nomination (Abraham Lincoln wasn't close to a majority of delegates in the 1860 convention, but he did win the Republican nomination). Trump won all the other states in the night, with Ted Cruz giving him a run for his money in Missouri. Tonight ensures that the Donald maintains his lead in the delegates and gives him a likely chance of winning the nomination.

Hillary Clinton is looking more and more inevitable as the Democratic nominee. Not only did she win the southern states of Florida and South Carolina easily, but she also able to pull wins in the three other states. Bernie Sanders was supposed to be more competitive in Midwest states and western states, but he only came close in Illinois and Missouri. It is fair to say that the Sanders candidacy is coming to an end unless Clinton dies or goes to jail.

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Super Tuesday II

Five states are voting tonight for the party nominations. While there aren't as many states are there were on Super Tuesday, today is being called Super Tuesday II because the states that are voting are large states with a large pool of delegates. In some cases, they are winner-take-all rather than proportional with providing delegates.


It is Marco Rubio's last stand in his home state. Can he pull off an upset? Possible, but unlikely. This would mark the end of Rubio's presidential campaign if he loses, but he still has the option to run for his Senate seat. His best hope his high turnout among Cuban voters in the south of the state in and around Miami. As for the Democrats, this will be a test to see Hillary Clinton's strength among Cubans in the south of state. I expect her to easily win in most of the major cities.


It is expected to go for the Democrats in the general election, but Republicans still hold a lot of sway because it has a lot of delegates. Ted Cruz has spent some time in the state, but I don't think it will be enough for him to prevail. As for the Democrats, it's looking to be a closer competition between Bernie Sanders and Clinton. This is a Midwest state, so Sanders has a lot of liberals that will back him, but then there's Chicago. It's a large urban center that has the potential to tip the scales to Clinton.


If John Kasich doesn't win his home state, then he's out. Right now I think Kasich is the favorite, but it will probably still be close. Kasich should hope to perform excellently with suburban and urban Republicans while Trump will probably rake up the countryside. As for the Democrats, we will see a similar race to the one in Illinois.

North Carolina

It's a southern state, so Trump and Clinton should do very well here.


This state will be a Cruz vs. Trump state and the former has been spending a lot of time here. Maybe he can pull off an upset, but there isn't much polling data. I can also see Sanders being very competitive here because he has won in neighboring states.

Saturday, March 12, 2016

On the Debates

I didn't cover the last several debates because I they're becoming useless. At this point, most voters have made their decision on who to support and the debates have become worthless due to lack of movement in support. Candidates can continue to repeat their talking points and engage with others, but there are few voters who haven't made their minds up at this point in the nomination races.

Last week's Republican debate was a joke and I think it hurt the party as a whole. For most of the Republican debates, Donald Trump dominates in speaking time. I've never seen Trump at his worst than during the debate. He said everything from joking about his junk to childishly calling his opponents "Lyin' Ted" and "Little Marco." He had big problems trying to explain his policies when moderator Chris Wallace presented them atop a screen for all to see. Trump was unable to substantially explain his policies.

At every turn, his three opponents looked and answered questions much better. Cruz made an excellent case that Trump is not a real conservative, but a fraud. He provided his own accomplished record. Marco Rubio continued to attack Trump during the debate and was the most aggressive out of the two. John Kasich was quite positive throughout the night and was a stark contrast from the other three, but I think the Ohio governor is look for a VP slot at this point unless a brokered convention does go his way. Either way, it won't change the views of Trump supporters.

The Democrats held a debate over the weekend in Flint, Michigan. Hillary Clinton won the debate because she was able to list a number of Bernie Sanders' weaknesses. Sanders did not vote for the bailout that Democrats argue "saved" the auto industry. She also pointed out that she was the only Democratic senator to vote against Export-Import Bank. She could have performed better. I thought she was still pragmatic at times.

Sanders missteped on tone during the night. His "excuse me, I'm talking" made him seem annoyed rather than polite. He loved to attack Wall Street and if you hate them then you liked Sanders during the night. The problem for the socialist candidate is that these voters are not enough to win the Democratic nomination race. I've explained that a countless number of times. His big win in Michigan was an upset, but it wasn't by a large margin necessary to win the night in terms of delegates. Adding together the delegates from Michigan and Mississippi and you will that Clinton won the night.

Finally, the most recent Republican debate brought back some civility to the 2016 election. Cruz and Trump attacked each other at times, but not so much compared to previous debate. The Donald was at ease for most of the debate. Rubio stayed positive for the most party, as did John Kasich. Rubio maintained a specific and knowledgeable Coming out of that debate, you know Trump is going to be ahead.

Friday, March 11, 2016

Small Tuesday Results

Trump celebrates in Jupiter - Jabin Botsford/Getty Images
The results of Small Super Tuesday earlier this week hasn't changed the race that much, but they weren't expected to. Here are the results for the Republican side:

Donald Trump


Ted Cruz


Trump still has the lead, but these states dole out the delegates proportionally, so no one won a decisive victory last night. It is clear that Trump is close to winning the Republican nomination unless Ted Cruz or Marco Rubio (who had a very dismal performance) can stop him. John Kasich, who had a strong performance in Michigan, has now turned his attention to his home state of Ohio. A win here gives him all of the prized battleground state's 66 delegates. Rubio, who is fighting to win in Florida, is doing all he can to stop a Trump victory there that would give him 99 delegates in a winner-take-all contest.

Trump's victory speech was highly comical. Everything he said were lies during the speech from his resort in Jupiter, Florida. He touted Trump Steaks, which was a brand that went defunct in 2007. He showed of Trump Magazine, but it went bankrupt two years ago. He even said Chris Christie was in the room while giving his speech, but the New Jersey governor wasn't present. Here's the video:

What about the Democrats? It was a very shocking night as Bernie Sanders was able to win a close victory in the Michigan primary while Hillary Clinton won an expected landslide victory in Mississippi. Calculating it together, Clinton won more delegates during the night than Sanders did. One of the biggest problems was polling data, which most people thought was accurate. The polls greatly underestimated turnout among young people, independents who would vote in the primary, and Sanders' support among black voters. Part of it was that the pollsters had nothing to work off of. Remember that in 2008 Barack Obama was not on Michigan's ballot.

This big win keeps the Vermont senator in the race, but for how long? Here's his victory speech:

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Small Tuesday is Tonight

More voting is occurring today in the following contests: Hawaii, Idaho, Michigan, and Mississippi. The first two states will only be voting in the Republican field and Hawaii is the only caucus of the four. I'm not going to make any large predictions tonight because polling data isn't moving fast enough. I will only predict the Michigan race, which is where pollsters are actually interested. This makes sense because Michigan is the largest state of the four and the only battleground state.

At the moment, I'm seeing Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump lead in both of the polling averages. I think both of them will win the state. It doesn't look like a close a race, so I think Bernie Sanders will lose decisively. As for the Republicans, John Kasich from neighboring Ohio is polling hard there. I think he will take second since Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio are decreasing in the polls. Michigan allocates the delegates proportionally, so just because you win the state doesn't mean you take it all.

As for the other three states, it isn't all that clear. I think an easy prediction is for Mississippi, which is one of the southern states that hasn't voted yet. It will probably go for Clinton and Trump if you look at where states have been going dow there. Idaho is going to be interesting because of its location. Most states have voted are in the east of the country, not the west. Cruz has won four states west of the Mississippi River. His odds look better there. As for Hawaii, I think it's open to anyone because there has been very little polling data.

The results over the weekend show the race will continue. Trump only won two out of the five, Cruz won two, and Rubio won one. It was good for Sanders, who won three out of the four contests. After tonight, I expect all the candidates to stay in the race for later contests during the month.

Sunday, March 6, 2016

The UK's Brexit Referendum is On

Cameron announces his EU deal - STV News/PA Images
Prime Minister David Cameron has finished a deal with the European Union that gives the United Kingdom a "special status" that exempts the country from some political policies pushed by the EU and gives more protections for the pound sterling against the euro. With this deal, Cameron has announced that the EU membership referendum will be held on June 23. Furthermore, Cameron made a clear pro-EU case. In the markets, the value of the pound plunged from economic uncertainty about the future. The battle is on for the future of the British people.

As you'd expect, UK Independence Party Nigel Farage is energized and ready to campaign in the referendum. The Eurosceptic politician was recently on television host Andrew Marr's show criticizing the prime minister and advocating for leaving the EU:

Farage is among many voters who are dissatisfied with the election. In the case for Brexit, Justice Secretary Michael Gove endorsed the "no"vote writing for The Spectator magazine:
My starting point is simple. I believe that the decisions which govern all our lives, the laws we must all obey and the taxes we must all pay should be decided by people we choose and who we can throw out if we want change. If power is to be used wisely, if we are to avoid corruption and complacency in high office, then the public must have the right to change laws and Governments at election time.

But our membership of the European Union prevents us being able to change huge swathes of law and stops us being able to choose who makes critical decisions which affect all our lives. Laws which govern citizens in this country are decided by politicians from other nations who we never elected and can’t throw out. We can take out our anger on elected representatives in Westminster but whoever is in Government in London cannot remove or reduce VAT, cannot support a steel plant through troubled times, cannot build the houses we need where they’re needed and cannot deport all the individuals who shouldn’t be in this country. I believe that needs to change. And I believe that both the lessons of our past and the shape of the future make the case for change compelling.
Gove goes further by arguing that the European Union places too many economic regulations on the continent (which leads to higher unemployment), that the EU had led to weak border policies that have allowed refugees to easily flow through Europe, that it has led to more decline among countries with fragile economies, and that it is unable to handle foreign policy crises like in Libya and Syria. When Britain leads the EU, Gove believes that they can save the billions of pounds they send there and make more decisive foreign policy decisions.

Gove isn't alone. Boris Johnson, the popular mayor of London and another MP in Parliament, has also written about the benefits of ending EU membership. He believes that the EU has too much power in deciding what laws Britain must follow. The power that the EU continues to accumulate threatens British national sovereignty in his view. In response to the rising of Conservative Eurosceptic, rumors are abounding that Cameron will attempt to eliminate around 90 percent of his party's local associations in order to reduce the power of the chairmen, who are typically Eurosceptic. The reasoning from journalists is that Cameron wants to ensure that the next party leadership election goes to a pro-EU politican. Cameron says he will not be running in the 2020 general election, so it is unknown if the new prime minister will be someone who favors the EU or opposes it.

At the moment, a YouGov poll shows that the those who favor the EU hold a narrow lead with 40 percent favoring remaining in the EU. Right now 37 percent of the British voters want to leave the EU, with 18 percent undecided and 5 percent saying that they won't vote. One of Brexit's opponents is Timothy Garton Ash, professor of European studies at Oxford University, who made his case for staying as an EU member in The Spectator:
The past 30 years have been an exceptional period in European history: exceptionally good. Although we have certainly paid a price in loss of sovereignty and idiotic regulations (some of them made significantly more idiotic by very British bureaucracy at home), this has also been a good period for Britain. A correlation between a good period for the British economy and membership in the EU does not necessarily mean the latter is the cause of the former — what about Mrs Thatcher? What about Tony Blair? — but a careful analysis in the Financial Times suggests that EU membership has contributed to our prosperity, opening up British companies both to the opportunities of the single market and to the bracing winds of continental competition.
There's still many months to go before voting is held, but it's probably going to be a close and tight. Regardless of your views on the issue, it's gearing up to be a very fun and exciting year in politics.

Thursday, March 3, 2016

Fox News GOP Debate Tonight

The stage is set for another Republican debate tonight on Fox News. The most interesting aspect of this debate may be between Donald Trump and moderator Megyn Kelly. Trump did not attend the debate just before Iowa because he disliked the questions she asked from the August debate. He lost the caucus and plans to participate in this one because he risks losing more states.

Donald Trump should be prepared to defend himself against Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz. The whole debate will be conflict between these three candidates. It is another chance for the two senators to take down the billionaire and they won't miss the chance. More states will vote on Saturday. These primaries and caucuses could turn the nomination race around, but it depends on if more voters will turn to the two other candidates rather than the Donald. John Kasich will probably stay positive throughout tonight's debate, preferring to be a man of calm rather than one who will differentiate himself from the other candidates. The voters will decide if they prefer Kasich or one of the other candidates who want to be the chief anti-Trump.

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Trump and Clinton Dominate Super Tuesday

Super Tuesday didn't change much in the 2016 presidential race, except that everyone remained where they were and they all received more delegates. The biggest news from last night will be that Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton both kept their statuses as the frontrunners of the two parties. It provides a sense of inevitability for their candidacies, but their biggest rivals also won some states. One of the problems with Super Tuesday is that there weren't many polls published in certain states, which meant I could only predict by guessing. Predicting by guessing never works, so I was wrong about some states.

For the Democrats, Super Tuesday looked like this:

The gap between the delegates is clearly widening. Unlike the Republican race, Clinton is facing an easier challenge in one candidate who is very antiestablishment and cannot appeal to several groups in the Democratic Party. This allows her to win an easy majority if Sanders wants to take it to the convention.

Hillary Clinton


Bernie Sanders


I will admit that I'm surprised that Bernie Sanders won so many states, but looking into the demographics afterward I realized that I shouldn't be. Vermont is his home state, but the other states all carried large amounts of Democrats that like him: white liberals and rural voters. Sanders can continue in the Democratic race, but it doesn't change the fact that he needs to improve on his support and minority appeal. Clinton was the winner of the night because she carried more than double the states Sanders won. I expected Clinton to win in Massachusetts based on where the polls were going, but I was surprised it wasn't closer.

Clinton easily swept through the southern states with ease, winning everything from Virginia to Texas. Most Sanders supporters are likely to complain that the majority of these states are conservative and will go Republican anyway, so they will question why these states matter. The answer is that even southern Democrats deserve representation. In fact, those Democrats in the south get little representation in their local governments. The loudest voice they have is in the presidency, which matters the most. It also shows that Clinton's reach extends throughout the entire Democratic Party. As Harry Enten of FiveThirtyEight put it:
We’ve now seen 15 states vote in the Democratic contest, and it’s clear that Clinton’s coalition is wider than Sanders’s. Sanders has won only in relatively small states where black voters make up less than 10 percent of the population. That’s not going to work this year when black voters are likely to make up more than 20 percent of Democratic primary voters nationwide. 
On Tuesday, we saw why. As she did in Nevada and South Carolina, Clinton won huge margins of black voters. Her worst performance was in Oklahoma, where 71 percent of black voters in the Democratic primary chose her. In Alabama, she won 93 percent of black voters on her way to winning 78 percent of Democrats overall. Clinton took no less than 64 percent of the overall vote in the Southern states she won.
Unless an unforeseen catastrophe happens, Clinton has inched closer to the Democratic nomination and the presidency.

As for the Republicans, the results were this:

Donald Trump


Ted Cruz


Marco Rubio


It was a very good night for Donald Trump, who won states in many different regions across the country. I think Trump will continue to win most voters in the upcoming states, but not a majority. The good news for Trump is that the field is not consolidating under one opponent. Larry Sabato of the University of Virginia's Center for Politics posted this after Super Tuesday:
Trump won coming and going. It wasn’t just adding at least seven states and a large pile of delegates to his column. His two top opponents, Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz, each got enough to stay in, and John Kasich also shows no sign of getting out until after Ohio votes on March 15. Happiness for Donald Trump is a divided opposition. He’s got precisely that and it’s going nowhere for the time being.
Ted Cruz had an okay night, but his campaign will remain relevant from winning three additional states. His problem was that he didn't exactly dominate among evangelicals. Marco Rubio, in my opinion, had a bad night because he only won Minnesota. I think he was hoping that other candidates would clear the field if he had a strong performance, but that didn't happen. Rubio was particularly hurt in Virginia despite a strong second place showing because he spent a lot of time in that state. Nevertheless, I expect both of them to stay in race for keeping some nice percentages of supporters.

It should be noted that both Cruz and Rubio exceeded my expecations because I expected Trump to win everything easily with the exception of Texas. Trump is going be touted as the likely nominee and he has come closer to becoming it. The only problem for him is the delegate math. He did not win a majority of the delegates on Super Tuesday, which could pose a problem at the convention. Here's the graph for the Republicans:

We can compare this to the Democratic race because Trump is widening the gap in the delegate count even if it is not a majority. Meanwhile, it seems that Ben Carson will be dropping out of the presidential race. The retired neurosurgeon, who was once leading in the polls, started to decline in support following the Paris terrorist attack and the rise of the Ted Cruz. Carson remained very popular among Republicans, but that doesn't translate to voters. John Kasich came in at a close second in Vermont, but had no strong performances anywhere else. Yet Kasich will stay in race, hoping to turn it around in another state.

The Republican race is now reduced to only four candidates. Trump has the advantage and everyone is wondering if his opposition will rally behind one candidate. Cruz is looking for more western states with evangelical voters. Rubio is seeking support in the states around the Great Lakes area, the Mid-Atlantic area, and the west coast. Trump is moving closer to the nomination, but his opponents are ready to fight back.