Super Tuesday III: The End of the Road

Patrick Murray's picture

Super Tuesday III: The End of the Road

Well the day has finally arrived - March 15. Today is by far the most important nominating contest to date in this election year. Tonight careers will be changed, campaigns will end, and some important battleground states are up for grabs. Florida, Ohio, Illinois, North Carolina, and Missouri are voting today. 

 

On the Democratic side, If Hillary Clinton sweeps Florida and Ohio tonight with victories then the path is almost certain for her to win the nomination. If Bernie Sanders creates a political upset like he did in Michigan last week then Clinton is still poised to win the nomination. The only difference is the primary process will just prolonged even more. If Bernie Sanders loses both of these states tonight then he's almost certain to not make it to Philadelphia in July. Florida and Ohio are critical in this election. Florida is unique because it is a melting pot of all sorts of demographics. You have the Latino and black vote down in South Florida. Those demographics are critical to Hillary Clinton's chances in winning the nomination. Most of northern Florida has more white voters. The question in Florida is will the white Democrats voting in north Florida vote for Sanders or Clinton. Sanders might have an edge because he does well with white liberals. But the question arises about whether or not northern Democrats are more centrist or conservative, which would favor Clinton. If they are more liberal then Sanders could win Florida. Something else to think about is if Sanders wins young people in Florida the race will not only be close, but he could also win Florida that way on top of white liberals. The polls in Florida close at 8PM ET due to the panhandle closing at 8PM ET. If Bernie Sanders loses tonight in Florida and Ohio then he will need to win around 50-70% of the states up for grabs to clinch the nomination. 

 

Now on to the Republican race. If Donald Trump wins in Florida and Ohio tonight Marco Rubio no longer has a realistic path to the nomination. As for John Kasich he won't either if he loses tonight in Ohio. Tonight is critical for Marco Rubio. The ad wars in Florida between Donald Trump and Marco Rubio have become so brutal and they could make a difference in the election. Rubio might not be able to recover after tonight if he ever wants to run for the U.S. Senate again or even Governor. If Rubio loses also then it bestows the responsibility of the only establishment candidate left to defeat Trump onto Governor Kasich. If Kasich drops out after tonight then this race is now between Donald Trump and Ted Cruz. 

 

Tonight should be an exciting night as Florida has 99 Republican and 214 Democratic delegates at stake. While Ohio has 66 winner-take-all delegates. If Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton win big tonight the chances for the rest of the Republican and Democratic fields to continue remains almost impossible to win. Tonight's results should solidify Trump and Clinton as the nominees of their both respective parties heading into November. 

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