After the latest round of primaries, it’s becoming increasingly likely that Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump will become their parties respective nominees. While both still have formidable opponents, they seem set to be on the ballot against each other on November 8th if things continue to play out as they are.
When it comes to the Republicans, it seems that at this point in time only Trump and Cruz have a realistic possibility of winning the nomination. While Kasich cannot mathematically get a majority of delegates, in the unlikely event of brokered convention he could (with some luck and fairy dust) somehow get the GOP nomination. High profile condemnation of Trump from figures such as Mitt Romney and Sen. Ben Sasse has had the opposite effect, with Trump continuing to maintain his seemingly unassailable lead in the polls. His recent convincing win in Florida meant that Marco Rubio, once touted as the man to stop Trump, received a humiliating loss in his home state, subsequently pulling out of the race.
Cruz’s initial victory in Iowa and his victory in Texas has left him with enough momentum to continue his race competitively, but unless Trump manages to lose votes say something which is too crass (he’s coped up til now) or does something which even his supporters can’t stomach (can he?) then he should probably wrap up his nomination. I think that with his nomination, any semblance of respect which the GOP had will be lost to an electorate which is at odds with much of the electorate’s views. Despite this, if he can reinvent himself as a moderniser and moderate some of his views while effectively targeting Hillary Clinton then I wouldn’t rule him out of reaching the White House, believe it or not.
In the Democratic camp, we see Hillary Clinton seemingly steering herself slowly but surely towards becoming the Democratic nominee. While Bernie Sanders has consistently provided Clinton with stiff opposition, the fact that he needs to win around 67% of the remaining delegates* suggests that this may be too little, too late from him. While many delegates could be swayed if they see Sanders gaining any more traction, Clinton’s personal connections with many of these delegates and caucuses makes it difficult for Sanders to beat her. That being said, Bernie was projected to lose Michigan by double digits, yet he actually went on to beat the former secretary of state.
If Clinton wants to wrap up a quick victory, she’ll need to build up convincing leads in delegate-rich states such as Wisconsin and smaller ones like Idaho where Sanders is genuinely contesting with her. That, coupled with wins in New York and California would render her Democratic nominee for president, and most likely the first female president of the United States. While she has had a questionable past to say the least, flip flopping on issues such as NAFTA and same-sex marriage, she would probably enter an election as the favourite and without any big blunders she would win a general election.
With a frustrated electorate tired of the status quo, this election is still up in the air. That being said, the Clinton/Trump juggernaut has managed to plough ahead. If Sanders can receive more congressional backings (he currently has none from any Senators or Governors) then the tide could turn in his favour. Cruz needs to recover the evangelical vote which he has been haemorrhaging from Trump.
Think that I’m being too presumptuous? Drop a comment below!
*This statistic includes superdelegates who have already pledged their support for either candidate. It’s possible that some of these people may change their preference in the coming months and so it’s impossible to give a concrete statistic.