SUPERIOR TUESDAY: Live recap
By Evan Lips | March 15, 2016, 18:26 EDT
UPDATE (12:10 a.m.)
With Missouri still undecided, Tuesday’s results still prove one thing: Donald Trump, according to the Associated Press tally, now remains the only candidate who can (will?) snag enough delegates to net the GOP presidential nomination:
— AP Politics (@AP_Politics) March 16, 2016
Missouri aside, tonight’s most notable developments: 1. Trump’s landslide victory in Florida (one of the all-or-nothing states in which all of its 99 delegates go to the victor) prompted Sen. Marco Rubio to bow out of the race. Rubio’s exit means he joins former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush as Sunshine State victim no. 2 on Trump’s hit list. 2. Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s wins Florida, Norther Carolina, Ohio (and projected win in Illinois) have dealt a big blew to Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders’s upstart bid. Sanders and Clinton are still neck-and-neck in Missouri, which means we’ve potentially made some presidential primary history:
3. Ohio Gov. John Kasich snagged his home state, grabbing his first primary victory of 2016.
4. Texas Sen. Ted Cruz keeps hanging around — GOP establishment haters who aren’t already on The Donald’s side now turn their lonely eyes to him.
UPDATE: (11:15 p.m.)
“Democrats should not be popping champagne corks because Donald Trump’s doing so well.” – David Plouffe, senior 2008 Obama campaign adviser.
“I’ve run against her machine and I’ve run against Donald Trump — she’s in for the ride of her life.” – former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee on Hillary Clinton.
Also — looks like Trump isn’t finished tormenting Marco Rubio:
Thank you Marco, I agree! pic.twitter.com/PTfFzFno9p
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 16, 2016
Meanwhile, while waiting on Missouri….
And then there’s this:
The anti-Trump PAC “Trump Has Tiny Hands” was ordered to change its name to something w/o Trump’s name. So it did: pic.twitter.com/6p9uRdL0Kh
— Yair Rosenberg (@Yair_Rosenberg) March 14, 2016
And a preview of the headlines awaiting Rubio in his home state Wednesday:
UPDATE (11:00 p.m.)
Missouri still too close to call.
With 75 percent reporting, Trump with 41.5 percent to Cruz’s 41.2 percent, a difference of a little more than 2,500 votes. On the Democratic side, with 75 percent reporting Sanders leads Clinton 50.8 percent to 48 percent, a difference of about 12,000 votes.
Of note — Missouri is not a “winner-take-all” state as far as delegates go.
UPDATE (10:45 p.m.)
After a big intro courtesy of former presidential candidate Carly Fiorina, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz hit the stage in Houston, heaping praise on recently-departed candidate Marco Rubio and telling supporters that the race is now down to two men — himself and Donald Trump.
“To those who supporter Marco so hard we welcome you with open arms,” Cruz says. “Only two campaigns have a plausible path to nomination — ours and Donald Trump’s.”
— The Post and Courier (@postandcourier) March 16, 2016
Total votes, today only Clinton ——— 3.1 million Trump ——— 2.7 mill Bernie —— 2.2 mill Cruz —— 1.5 mill Kasich — 1.3 mill Rubio – 0.9 mill — Dan Diamond (@ddiamond) March 16, 2016
Ted Cruz says the mainstream media wants @realDonaldTrump to be the Rep. nominee….because the TV network suits are “ready for Hillary”.
— Katie Conway (@Real_MaryK8) March 16, 2016
A clarification from earlier this evening:
As for Missouri?
3,000 votes separate Trump and Cruz right now. 3000. https://t.co/rvr59hVUr2
— Angela Rye! (@angela_rye) March 16, 2016
UPDATE (10:30 p.m.)
As Texas Sen. Ted Cruz readies to address supporters at his Houston headquarters, the last of Tuesday’s five states, Missouri, is still in play for the GOP with 50 percent of the vote logged.
Trump currently holds a small edge over Cruz, 41.8 percent to 41 percent. Kasich sits at 9 percent.
On the Democratic side, Missouri is still in play for Bernie Sanders. He has already seen big losses at the hands of Hillary Clinton in Florida, Illinois, North Carolina and Ohio.
Sanders currently leads with 50.8 percent of the vote compared to Clinton’s 47.8 percent, with 49 percent of the vote reporting.
UPDATE (10:00 p.m.)
Donald Trump began his victory speech in Florida with a shout-out to the Northern Mariana Islands, when went Trump and netted him nine delegates.
Says if he wins, “someday in the not-too distant future, Apple and all of these great products will be made in the United States.”
“He’s tough, he’s smart. He’s got a great future,” Donald Trump says of the man who used to call Little Marco.
— Matt Viser (@mviser) March 16, 2016
Trump rally. Literally the longest line I’ve ever seen. pic.twitter.com/eQlRFk2x24
— Trymaine Lee (@trymainelee) March 11, 2016
Trump: I’ve made the GOP the biggest political story around world…Everyone’s writing about it.
What they’re saying: pic.twitter.com/pEBUrbUomw
— Dan Diamond (@ddiamond) March 16, 2016
— The Hill (@thehill) March 16, 2016
UPDATE (9:45 p.m.) FOX News and CNN have projected a win for him in Illinois and now Donald Trump is about to take the stage at his Florida headquarters, having just delivered the final knockout blow to Sen. Marco Rubio. Trump squashed Rubio in his home state and spent part his night lashing out at FOX News, especially host Megyn Kelly, on Twitter. So far he’s 3 for 4, with Ohio the only blemish on his big night and Missouri still waiting in the wings. Watch live: http://www.c-span.org/video/?406514-1/march-15-primaries-results-speeches&live UPDATE (9:35 p.m.) FOX News says Donald Trump will win North Carolina ahead of Texas Sen. Ted Cruz.
Meanwhile, Charles Krauthammer says the question of who will emerge from the Democratic Party is over — it’s Clinton. “It’s inconceivable that it will be anybody else.”
UPDATE (9:25 p.m.) Ohio Gov. John Kasich took to the stage in Berea, Ohio, for a state primary victory speech and too praised Rubio. Immediately he was shouted at by what observers say was a Trump supporter, to which Kasich responded by talking about how he cut his teeth on politics in the 1970s during a time of “peaceful protests.” Same thing happened earlier at Rubio speech.
Don’t recall ever seeing supporters of another candidate attend and heckle an election night party. — Jon Keller (@kelleratlarge) March 16, 2016
Kasich also spoke about the standing ovation he received earlier when he walked into a Cleveland restaurant: “My reaction? Please don’t do that because you’re going to make me cry. To have people believe in you….I have to thank the people of the great state of Ohio because I love you.”
Watch live: http://online.wsj.com/public/resources/documents/live-video-event.html?mod=e2tw UPDATE (9:20 p.m.) Texas Sen. Ted Cruz took to social media to praise his senate colleague and now-vanquished presidential nominee Marco Rubio:
In a brief statement posted to his website, Cruz had some kind words for his fellow Cuban-American: “Marco Rubio is a friend and a colleague who ran an optimistic campaign focused on the future of our party, conservative principles, and uplifting the American people. The Republican primary was stronger because of the ideas he brought forth. Marco’s story embodies the promise of our great nation. I know he will continue to be a champion for limitless opportunity in America, and I wish Marco, Jeanette, and their four kids the very best.” UPDATE (9:15 p.m.) Hillary Clinton is now aiming her message directly at GOP frontrunner Donald Trump. She began her speech in West Palm Beach by congratulating Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, but that was the last mention she made of him.
Clinton taking square aim at Donald Trump. — Ryan Teague Beckwith (@ryanbeckwith) March 16, 2016
UPDATE (9 p.m.) Hillary Clinton, following big wins in North Carolina, Ohio and Florida, is speaking live at her headquarters in West Palm Beach. “Our campaign depends on small donations, if you’ve been waiting for the right moment, now is the time to come join us.” Watch live: http://www.c-span.org/video/?406514-1/march-15-primaries-results-speeches&live UPDATE: (8:45 p.m.) FOX News projects that Kasich will win Ohio over Trump.
UPDATE (8:40) Senior Rubio advisor Avik Roy:
On Dem side, AP has now called Florida, NC and Ohio for HRC. Missouri and Illinois are still out. — Annie Linskey (@AnnieLinskey) March 16, 2016
UPDATE (8:35 p.m.) And then there were three. Marco Rubio, who launched his presidential campaign approximately one year and one day ago, is now out. He leaves the race having won just a single state — Minnesota — and having been left bruised, battered and Trumped in his home state of Florida. Here in Massachusetts, Rubio’s biggest supporter, state Sen. Ryan Fattman (R-Webster), had this to say:
FOX News’ Juan Williams: “The Democrats feared Marco Rubio the most out of any Republican in the race.” Four states remain up for grabs tonight. With 15 percent of the vote reported in Ohio, Kasich currently leads Trump 44 percent to 32.5 percent, with 14.4 percent. In North Carolina, with 8 percent of the vote reporting, Trump leads Cruz 39.3 percent to 35.5 percent, with Kasich at 12.9 percent. Just 1 percent of the vote in Illinois and Missouri has been reported thus far. UPDATE (8:25 p.m.) Rubio says his campaign is suspended: “After tonight it is clear that while we are on the right side this year, we are not on the winning side.” More: “I still remain hopeful and optimistic about America.”
I’ve leaned Rubio since Walker left, but I’m shedding no tears. I’ve said since we had 17 candidates: “Show me you can win.” He didn’t. — Michael Graham (@IAMMGraham) March 16, 2016
UPDATE (8:15 p.m.) Rubio now congratulating Trump on his Florida win, the sound of boos raining down from the crowd at Rubio’s Miami headquarters with every Trump reference. “America is in the middle of a political storm,” Rubio says, as a member of the crowd shouts something unintelligible and Rubio responds by saying, “we won’t beat you up at our events.” (Crowdmember a Trump supporter?) Rubio continues: “Quite frankly there are millions of people in this country that are tired of being looked down upon by the elitists telling them how to vote.” Watch live: http://www.c-span.org/video/?406514-1/march-15-primaries-results-speeches&live
Marco Rubio is giving the first speech of his next campaign. — Ryan Teague Beckwith (@ryanbeckwith) March 16, 2016
UPDATE (8 p.m.) CNN has called Florida for Clinton and Trump. That’s 99 delegates for Trump, as Florida is a “winner-take-all” state, meaning The Donald now has 568 delegates. Meanwhile, in Ohio:
UPDATE (7:50 p.m.) At this rate, Florida will be the first state out of the five to be ‘called’ tonight, and it increasingly looks like the state will go Trump/Clinton: PS: Anyone else remember this? UPDATE (7:35 p.m.) CNN exit polls in Ohio show Kasich edging Trump:
Ohio exit polls, according to CNN *Kasich* — 45% Trump — 38% Cruz — 14% — Dan Diamond (@ddiamond) March 15, 2016
UPDATE (7:30 p.m.) Trump is already claiming his adversary Marco Rubio’s home state of Florida:
Word is that, despite a record amount spent on negative and phony ads, I had a massive victory in Florida. Numbers out soon! — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 15, 2016
Early returns show Trump ahead in every region of Florida outside of Rubio’s hometown of Miami. Latest returns show Trump leading Rubio 393,000 votes to 233,000, with 37 percent of the state reporting. Rubio has said he will head to Utah to continue his campaign regardless of Florida’s outcome. UPDATE (7:25 p.m.) Early returns suggest Hillary Clinton could run away with Florida:
UPDATE (7:05 p.m.) Ballot shenanigans again in Florida, home of the infamous dimpled chad of the 2000 presidential election? GOP frontrunner Donald Trump is suspicious:
A lot of complaints from people saying my name is not on the ballot in various places in Florida? Hope this is false. — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 15, 2016
Trump apparently received word from FOX News’s Jennifer Eckhart:
Florida Secretary of State Ken Detzner says the rumors are unfounded:
UPDATE (6:50 p.m.) Polls haven’t closed yet and former GOP candidate Carly Fiorina is already urging Kasich and Rubio to hang it up:
“John Kasich and Marco Rubio are honorable people and have won honorable campaigns,” Fiorina, a Cruz supporter, told MSNBC. “I very much hope they both will be statesmanlike and exit the race because that’s what it needs to be now.”
At stake tonight — presidential primaries in five states that could likely determine, especially in the Republican Party, whether challengers to the Donald Trump freight train like Ohio Gov. John Kasich and Florida Sen. Marco Rubio will survive. Kasich and Rubio have primaries in their home states. Losses to Trump or even Texas Sen. Ted Cruz in Ohio and Florida could spell the end for Kasich or Rubio.
The other states in play — Illinois, Missouri and North Carolina — contain a large swath of the all-important delegates. Trump earlier today netted all nine delegates from the Northern Mariana Islands’ GOP caucus.
To win the nomination, a candidate needs at least 1,237 delegates. Trump currently leads by a wide margin, having secured 469 delegates, followed by Cruz at 370, Rubio at 163 and Kasich at 63.
For Republicans, there are a total of 358 delegates up for grabs today: 99 in Florida, 69 in Illinois, 52 in Missouri, 72 in North Carolina and 66 in Ohio.
As for the two-way race between former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders for the Democratic presidential nomination, there are a total of 691 delegates in play, spread out over the five states: 214 in Florida, 156 in Illinois, 71 in Missouri, 107 in North Carolina and 143 in Ohio.
Superdelegates — those in positions of power that can commit to back a candidate regardless of their state’s respective electoral outcome — total 32 in Florida, 26 in Illinois, 13 in Missouri, 14 in North Carolina and 16 in Ohio.
Clinton has already netted an overwhelming majority of the 712 superdelegates up for grabs. The 712-superdelegate total equates to nearly 30 percent of the 2,383-delegate simple majority needed to snag the nomination.
Clinton currently leads in the superdelegate count 467 to 26, and in the delegate count overall 1,235 to Sanders’s 580.
Polls in North Carolina and Ohio will close at 7:30 p.m. Polls in Florida, Illinois and Missouri will close at 8 p.m.
Check back here frequently tonight for updates.