Trump bags Michigan, Mississippi; *UPDATE* Sanders wins MI! Cruz wins ID…Trump way up in HI

Trump bags Michigan, Mississippi; *UPDATE* Sanders wins MI! Cruz wins ID…Trump way up in HI

Trump’s win was much narrower Tuesday in the Michigan primary than in Mississippi, but the real story may be that, with 71% of the vote tallied, Ted Cruz is still neck and neck with John Kasich for second place in Michigan.  (Cruz is within 500 votes of Kasich right now.  Both have a little over 245,000 to Trump’s 365,000+, or 36.7%.) Marco Rubio is well back at around 9%.

It took the networks some time to call Michigan for Trump.   They had no such qualms in Mississippi, which was called for Trump basically as soon as the polls closed.

With a nice lead over Cruz — 47.7% to 36.6% — Trump will get all of Mississippi’s delegates.  Kasich, with a little over 8%, and Rubio, with about 5%, got no “viability” jolt at all from the Magnolia State.

The Idaho polls close at 9 PM Mountain (11 PM Eastern).  The Hawaii polls don’t close until 1 AM Eastern.

A couple of snapshots to while away the time.

(Image: Screen cap, Google/AP)
Michigan primary results (Image: Screen cap, Google/AP)
(Image: Screen cap, Google/AP)
Mississippi primary results (Image: Screen cap, Google/AP)

As expected, on the Democratic side, Hillary ran away with Mississippi, beating Bernie out there with 83% of the vote.

Bernie is hanging in there in Michigan, however, still clinging tenaciously to a narrow but healthy lead with 70% of the vote tallied.  Although it’s still possible for Hillary to surge, it’s looking less likely at this point.

(Image: Screen cap, Google/AP)
(Image: Screen cap, Google/AP)

It will clearly become a good question why Rubio is still in the race.  Trump has a big lead over him in the latest Florida poll (although Rubio is reported to have a big lead over Trump among early voters).  I wouldn’t urge anyone to do what I myself don’t intend to do — i.e., vote “strategically,” as opposed to voting for the candidate I think is the best guy — but if you like to think in strategic-voting terms, Cruz seems like the one.  He’s doing better than expected in Michigan today, and keeps coming in a strong second in contests Trump isn’t winning outright, but only getting pluralities in.

If Hillary loses Michigan, that will be a big black eye for her.  The Democrats have got to be worried.

* UPDATE *  …and Bernie did it.  Hillary closed it up by about 7,000 or 8,000 votes, but with 97% of precincts in, Bernie’s still ahead by 50% to 48.1% for Hillary.  Hillary won the Detroit environs by a significant margin — but Detroit’s not the 800-pound gorilla it used to be.  Bernie outran her in all but six of the other counties.

Cruz has a big lead in Idaho now, and it does look like somebody finally called it for him.  He’s up 42% and change to Trump’s 29%.  Rubio’s back at 18%.  Assuming these numbers hold (reporting is at about 46% right now), Cruz and Trump will split the Idaho delegates.

* UPDATE 2 *  Getting one lick in before signing off: the early returns in Hawaii have Trump with a commanding lead.  He’s at 48%, Kasich 20%, Cruz 17%, Rubio 12%, with 4% of the vote tallied.

A Michigan update on the GOP side: Cruz is pulling away from Kasich to nail down the number 2 slot.  With 98% of the vote in, he’s up by over 8,000 votes, 24.9% to Kasich’s 24.3.  That’s close, but Kasich needed to reverse that result to keep his viability case strong.  Not happening.  Kasich may be number 2 in Hawaii, but Michigan is the one that counts.  This is a big outcome for Cruz.

* UPDATE 3 *  OK, OK, one more update.  Hawaii’s caucus results are being really volatile so far.  Cruz was initially way ahead of Kasich; then Kasich pulled way ahead of Cruz just before I added Update 2.  With 20% of the vote in, Cruz is back to being way ahead of Kasich.  Trump is still in the upper 40s; Cruz is at 28%, and Kasich has faded to 4th place, with 11% to Rubio’s 12.4%.  Cheers, night owls.

J.E. Dyer

J.E. Dyer

J.E. Dyer is a retired Naval Intelligence officer who lives in Southern California, blogging as The Optimistic Conservative for domestic tranquility and world peace. Her articles have appeared at Hot Air, Commentary’s Contentions, Patheos, The Daily Caller, The Jewish Press, and The Weekly Standard.


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