GOP March 5th & 6th (Trump again doesn't get a majority)
In the last post I wrote that a poll-driven result would look like this alongside the actual numbers in parenthesis:
Drumpf - 354 (336)
Cruz - 213 (231)
Rubio - 98 (110)
Kasich - 16 (27)
As you can see, Trump is no longer on a majority path to the nomination, against 386 total. All it will take is a couple of big upsets, like in Ohio and Florida, for Trump to not be able to go in with a majority. I assume he will cut a deal, most likely with Cruz, to secure the nomination. Today's contests are in KY, LA, KS and ME. Trump could sweep, but I will guess he suffers one upset. Could be Cruz in KS or in ME with Kasich.
Trump was very lucky on Super Tuesday, winnning AR, VA, and VT by about 3% in each state. His losing those three would have changed the narrative substantially (although not the delegate count by much at all).
It really doesn't matter that much who wins, but by how much (except for the media narrative). If Trump is limited to 35% or so in the states of KY, KS and ME, the delegates are likely going to be split 3-4 ways. In LA though, I expect it will only be Trump and Cruz that take nearly all the delegates. Here's a guess for the totals afterwards:
LA- 46 total: 30 Trump; 12 Cruz; 1 Rubio; 3 Other
KS- 40 total: 15 Trump; 10 Cruz; 8 Kasich; 7 Rubio
KY- 46 total: Trump 20; Cruz 12; Rubio 6; Kasich 6; Other 2
ME: 23 total: 9 Trump; 7 Kasich; 4 Cruz; 3 Rubio
Cruz has done well in the plains, and so he could win in KS. I could also see Kasich pulling off an upset win in ME. Alot of times, we see this sort of geo-spillover from the NH primary, which is one of the reasons why Kasich did so well in VT. A Trump sweep though, seems just as likely.
This seems pretty optimistic for Trump, winning 74 with 81 not aligned with him. If he's getting this, it shows the GOP NeverTrump efforts are not working very well. But, on Sunday, Rubio will likely take the entire 23 delegates in PR.
Given the above allocation, here are the projected totals:
Suddenly, Trump is only winning 74 delegates with 104 not aligned with Trump. And that seems like his best case scenario.
One interesting poll-related development to ponder is that Kasich might overtake Rubio going forward. Kasich will likely do better than Rubio in ME, and possibly even KS today. Kasich winning in Ohio is a good bet. If that happens, and Rubio loses FL, the latter will drop out and Kasich will benefit going forward. That is a possibility for actually de-railing Trump in many of the state votes happening after March 15th. Even before that though, MI votes on Tuesday, and Kasich might get a second place finish there.