Dear Commons Community,
Another set of primaries were held yesterday with split victories among the nominees. Hillary Clinton won Mississippi and Bernie Sanders won Michigan on the Democratic side. Donald Trump won Mississippi, Michigan and Hawaii, and Ted Cruz won Idaho. And the race goes on.
New York Times columnist, David Brooks, evaluated the Republican prospects and offered that the GOP should be cautious especially about a Ted Cruz candidacy.
“…before the current panic set in, Republicans understood that Ted Cruz would be a terrible general election candidate, at least as unelectable as Donald Trump and maybe more so. He is the single most conservative Republican in Congress, far adrift from the American mainstream. He’s been doing well in primaries because of the support of “extremely conservative” voters in very conservative states, and he really hasn’t broken out of that lane. His political profile is a slightly enlarged Rick Santorum but without the heart.
On policy grounds, he would be unacceptable to a large majority in this country. But his policy disadvantages are overshadowed by his public image ones. His rhetorical style will come across to young and independent voters as smarmy and oleaginous. In Congress, he had two accomplishments: the disastrous government shutdown and persuading all his colleagues to dislike him.
First, hit the pause button on the rush to Cruz.
Second, continue the Romneyesque assault on Trump. The results on Saturday, when late voters swung sharply against the Donald, suggest it may be working.
Third, work for a Marco Rubio miracle in Florida on March 15. Fourth, clear the field for John Kasich in Ohio. If Rubio and Kasich win their home states, Trump will need to take nearly 70 percent of the remaining delegates to secure a majority. That would be unlikely; he’s only winning 44 percent of the delegates now.
The party would go to the convention without a clear nominee. It would be bedlam for a few days, but a broadly acceptable new option might emerge. It would be better than going into the fall with Trump, which would be a moral error, or Cruz, who in November would manage to win several important counties in Mississippi.
The hour is late and the odds may be long. But there is still hope. It’s a moment for audacity, not settling for Ted Cruz simply because he’s the Titanic you know.”
The hour is indeed late and it seems that the Republican Party has a Herculean task ahead of itself as it tries to find a way out of its presidential primary morass.