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Thursday, 17 March 2016 08:05

Trump Soars in Florida, Rubio Suspends Campaign

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Marco Rubio Marco Rubio

Tuesday, March 15th, marked another big day for both Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton on the road to their respective Party's nominations of the Presidential election this November. Both scored decisive wins in important states, with Trump taking all 99 delegates of Florida's winner-take-all primary, and winning both North Carolina and Illinois primaries. He holds a slight edge of Ted Cruz in the vote count in Missouri at the time of this printing, although the contest has yet to be called.

Florida changed the race in an even bigger sense beyond adding to Trump's delegate lead, with U.S. Senator Marco Rubio suspending his campaign for the presidency following a poor showing in his home state, and winning a scant number of contests and delegates prior to that. Rubio won just one of Florida's 67 counties, and Trump garnered 46 percent of the statewide vote compared to Rubio's distant second place finish of 27 percent.
"I believe with all my heart that the winner of the Florida primary ... will be the nominee of the Republican Party," Rubio said just last week.

"Thank you Marco, I agree," Trump replied via Twitter.

Even if Trump takes Missouri, Tuesday wasn't a perfect sweep for him. Ohio, and all 66 of its delegates went to Ohio Governor John Kasich, the last remaining "establishment" candidate on the Republican side of the ballot. He, too faced a last stand, but survived when he garnered 47 percent of the Buckeye State's vote in the Republican primary compared to Trump's 36 percent.

However, Kasich is so far behind both Trump and his closest competition, U.S. Senator Ted Cruz, that he would most likely need an open convention to have a chance to secure the nomination, and that only has a chance of occurring if neither Trump nor Cruz cross the 1,237 delegate threshold before the Republican Convention rolls around. Trump currently has 673, with 1,061 delegates remaining in play.

However, with Trump's support coming mainly from those disaffected by mainstream "establishment" politics, such a runaround for the nomination could alienate a lot of voters should anyone but Trump get the nod.

"So Trump takes most of the states, the largest number of delegates by far and still the Republican Party refuses to support the people's choice, no wonder the people are mad," said Sun Bay Publisher Carl Conley.

On the Democrats side of things, Clinton swept all five states, leaving U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders shrinking path to the nomination even murkier. Currently, Clinton has 1,606 of the 2,383 delegates needed for the Democratic nomination, with 2,308 available delegates left to win in the remaining contests.

Staff Report

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