The Volokh Conspiracy
Mostly law professors | Sometimes contrarian | Often libertarian | Always independent
The headlines are mostly trumpeting (heh!) the Donald's victory in seven states last night, but the delegate count suggests that the victory was far from overwhelming, and the Republican race is far from over. According to The Post, Trump will receive approximately 234 delegates, Ted Cruz 209, Marco Rubio 90, John Kasich 19 and Ben Carson 3. So the total delegate count last night was approximately Trump 234, non-Trump 321. And in the end, Trump needs to get a majority of delegates, not just win vote pluralities.
I understand that many of the upcoming states will be winner-take-all, and this puts Trump in the driver's seat. But many analysts expected Trump to win 10 states (all but Cruz's home state of Texas) and to create an insurmountable delegate lead. That didn't happen; not only did Trump lose four states, but he came within three percentage points of losing an additional three states (Arkansas, Vermont, Virginia).
Trump is still the front-runner and likely to remain in that position, but a contested convention has become more likely. And if Cruz and Rubio could work out a president-vice president deal soon, that would make a Trump defeat even more likely. As Yogi Berra famously said, "It ain't over till it's over."
[Disclosure: Cruz wrote the foreword to my book "Lawless."]