Was yesterday Super Tuesday II or III? I can't keep up with all of the super stuff happening in this election. Nevertheless, the results yielded winners and losers:
1. Marco Rubio. After getting clobbered in his home state of Florida by a man he clearly despises, the young Senator finally called it quits. I like him, voted for him when I had the chance. While I didn't agree on every position he took on the issues, I just liked him. He's smart, confident and positive. He's the kind of man who would as President imbue the office with youth and vigor. Maybe he was too young, maybe his resume too thin for 2016.
2. Ted Cruz. Even though he came close in Missouri and North Carolina, coming close isn't good enough when you're supposed to be the man who is going to overtake Trump. Losing in North Carolina was particularly disappointing, since it was a State that seemed well suited for his message. No matter how his campaign labors to spin the results, coming in second isn't how you become the nominee.
3. Bernie Sanders. Clearly, getting swept by Hillary Clinton last night put an end to the pipe dream that always was his candidacy. "FEEL THE BERN" was always a pretty cool slogan and all, but the heat is gone now. He put up a decent fight, and the fact that Hillary Clinton, with her war chest of dirty money and virtual lock on super delegates, had such a difficult time dispatching a 74 year old Socialist, says more about her than him. Although Bernie Sanders lives at the other end of the political universe from me, there was always something endearing about the man. For one thing, he was authentic. He didn't need an army of pollsters and confidence men to tell him how or what to think. He never once had to reinvent himself. He just walked up to the podium and said, "I'm Bernie Sanders. I'm a Red and proud of it. Vote for me." I'll miss him.
1. Hillary Clinton. Barring an FBI indictment, a New York Times expose of a lesbian affair, or the discovery of a cancerous tumor in her lungs as the source of her incessant coughing, she is not only your Democratic nominee, but the next President of the United States.
2. John Kasich. Finally...after 27 contests, the man wins something. Although, in all honesty, declaring a man with a 1-26 record in primaries a winner is sort of like declaring Bruce Jenner a lovely lady...sort of true, but not very convincing. What's next for the guy? Where can he possibly pull off another win? Nowhere. His big hope is to somehow become the compromise, consensus pick of a brokered convention. Good luck with that, John.
3. Donald Trump. Anyone else who won four out of five contests last night on the Republican side would have been declared the clear winner. But every media outlet known to exist in the free world keeps grasping at the elusive straw of a deadlocked convention as a way of denying the man. In my lifetime, I have never seen a candidate so universally hated by practically every corner of the political establishment as Donald Trump...and yet, he keeps winning. It's actually funny hearing all of the wise men casting doubts..."Yes, but...he can't get above 45%!...Yes, but now that Rubio is out, conservatives will coalesce around Cruz!...Yes, but now that Kasich has won Ohio, he won't be able to get enough delegates before the convention!" When I was growing up, this kind of talk was called, whistling past the graveyard.
So, my takeaway from last night was this...the 2016 election will be a contest between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton...the Devil and the Deep Blue Pantsuit. Come November the 8th, all of us will be about ready to blow our brains out.