Trump wins Arizona, Cruz wins Utah
After the Arizona primary and Utah caucus, both real estate mogul Donald Trump and Texas senator Ted Cruz came away with a substantial amount of delegates. However, both candidates are now slowly running out of states to grab delegates in to reach the magic number of 1237. As of today, Trump has a commanding lead with 741 delegates with Cruz trying to catch up owning 461 delegates. It is clear that the path to become the Republican nominee is much easier for the New York businessman. Going into Tuesday’s contests, analysts stated that Trump needed to win around 53% of the remaining delegates, with Cruz needing roughly 80% of the remaining delegates in order to become the nominee. This being said, in order for the Texas senator to simply catch up to Donald Trump, he would need to come away with almost all of the delegates in both states.
However, Cruz failed to achieve the necessary number of delegates in Tuesday’s contests in order to prevent Trump from running away with the majority. Although Cruz was able to surpass the 50% threshold in Utah and therefore obtain all 40 delegates, Trump had a huge victory in the winner-take-all Arizona primary and walked away with 58 delegates. Let’s take a look at the math. Trump was awarded 58 out of the 98 delegates (59%) from the two states. Cruz only won 40 out of the 98 (41%) delegates. This simple math proves that Trump is keeping up with his pace to become the nominee outright, while Cruz’s chances are slowly becoming more of a fantasy. As a result of these contests, Donald Trump also expanded the delegate gap between him and Cruz by 18 delegates.
In addition, Trump’s lead will be even bigger once the statewide at-large delegates in Missouri are officially awarded. The March 15th primary that had only 1700 votes separating the two candidates had initially delayed the official results because they had to collect the rest of overseas absentee ballots. However, the Missouri GOP had actually released the results a couple days after the Republican primary through a press release stating that Donald Trump in fact won the state. The delegates will be tentatively allocated pending certification by the Missouri Secretary of State, Democrat Jason Kander. However, the recount law in Missouri allows a second-place finisher to request a recount if the margin of victory is less than half a percentage point. As the count stands now, the margin of victory is small enough that Cruz would be able to request a recount to verify the findings, if he chooses to do so. The statewide at-large delegate win would add 12 to Trump’s total delegate count giving him 753, almost 300 more than the Texas senator.