Per the NYTimes, “Donald Trump Finds Ally in Delegate Selection System, Much to G.O.P.’s Chagrin”:
… Hoping to avoid a repeat of the messy fight for the Republican nomination in 2012, the party drew up a calendar and delegate-selection rules intended to allow a front-runner to wrap things up quickly.
Now, with Republicans voting in 11 states on Tuesday, the worst fears of the party’s establishment are coming true: Donald J. Trump could all but seal his path to the nomination in a case of unintended consequences for the party leadership, which vehemently opposes him.
“Trump has significant advantages, and that’s the way the system is designed,” said Joshua T. Putnam, a political science lecturer at the University of Georgia with an expertise in delegate selection. “It’s right in line with what the folks designing these rules wanted. It’s just not the candidate they preferred.”
As the calendar flips, March brings a whirlwind of states voting on the same days and in quick succession. By the middle of the month, 58 percent of the total delegates will have been awarded, and Mr. Trump could be unstoppable in getting the 1,237 needed to clinch the nomination.
With the exception of Texas, the home state of Senator Ted Cruz, recent polls show Mr. Trump leading in the so-called Super Tuesday states that vote this week, including Alabama, Georgia, Massachusetts and Virginia. Though Texas has the most delegates of states voting on Tuesday, 155, they all award delegates proportionally, so that Mr. Cruz will most likely have to share the haul…
Meanwhile, on our “mostly
harmless sane” side of the aisle, the people at the top have stayed about as civil as politics ever gets. Despite a fake NYTimes article “widely circulated on social media”, that includes my own senior senator, as reported in Politico:
Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders are battling it out in Massachusetts ahead of the March 1 primary here — and the state’s most important endorsement, Sen. Elizabeth Warren, is still sitting on the sidelines of the debate, watching and waiting for her moment of maximum leverage.
Even as Clinton turns Massachusetts — a predominantly white, progressive New England state that should be tailor-made for Sanders — into a battleground Super Tuesday state, the campaign has been quietly respectful of Warren’s desire to remain neutral.
In part, that’s because the progressive standard-bearer — and the only member of the state’s congressional delegation who has not endorsed Clinton — is expected to play the role of peacemaker in the Democratic Party at some point in the months leading up to the convention, sources familiar with Warren’s thinking said.
If Clinton wins enough delegates by the end of March to become the presumptive Democratic nominee, Warren is expected to negotiate hard before giving her support to Clinton. In doing so, she could play a critical role helping to bring young, enthusiastic Sanders supporters into her fold…
Apart for stocking up on popcorn, and Pepto-Bismol, for this evening’s results-watching, what’s on the agenda for the day?