Well most folks are talking about Jeb! dropping out last night. It was good that he did, it was clearly time given his poor showings in Iowa, New Hampshire and now, South Carolina.
I’m more interested in the damage Jeb! did though. Actually, not just Jeb! bit also Kasich and Carson. Let’s do some math. (Hypothetical math)
SC Primary Final Numbers
1. Donald Trump: 238,067 (32%)
2. Marco Rubio: 164,691 (22.5%)
3. Ted Cruz: 163,732 (22.3%)
4. Jeb Bush: 57,472 (7.8%)
5. John Kasich: 55,920 (7.6%)
6. Ben Carson: 52,958 (7.2%)
If you add Jeb!, Kasich and Carson’s votes together it comes out to 166,350. For the sake of argument, let’s say that if those three had not been in the race that their voters would have gone to either Rubio or Cruz.
For the sake of simplicity and just as an exercise, let’s divide that 166,350 in half which is 83,175.
Now let’s add that 83,175 to our 2nd and third place finishers, which were actually only separated by 959 votes or .2%. (I believe that both Rubio and Cruz surpassed the turnout McCain had, by the way.)
Rubio: 164,691 + 83,175 = 247,866
Cruz: 163,732 _ 83,175 = 246,907
Trump’s total was 238,067.
With Jeb!, Kasich and Carson’s vote, they both beat Trump. When I said “damage” earlier on, this is what I meant. The leeching of votes by these three quite possibly hamstrung the top runners.
Carson and Kasich need to get out of the way.
Rubio and Cruz need to stop attacking each other and hit Trump and Hillary.
Whether or not Rubio can ally with Cruz or not and whether or not Cruz can get past Rubio’s Alinsky style campaigning against Cruz remains to be seen. As much as he tried to muddy the waters, Rubio’s still got an Amnesty/Gang of 8 problem, which will fail to motivate the base much in the same way we say lack of motivation in 2012.
Alinksy would be proud of you, Marco.
— A.P. Dillon – LL1885 (@LadyLiberty1885) February 18, 2016
If the two of them are serious, they need to work together. Cruz is my first choice, but I’d certainly take Rubio before Trump.