Do Not Go Gently Into That Good Night… Ted Cruz, The Constitution and Third Party Choices

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I’ve never seen a train wreck, but I’m told they are somewhat difficult to turn away from if you see one occurring right in front of you. That was my experience two nights ago watching Donald Trump roll in Indiana and then Ted Cruz suspending his campaign.

What made the night almost surreal is that it came on the heels of Ted Cruz simply destroying Trump at a press conference earlier in the day. I couldn’t help but wonder if things might have turned out differently had Cruz not done the same a month before. I’m not sure it would have made a difference with the treacherous John Kasich still in the race, but one never knows.

So now we have it… A GOP nominee selected by Democrats, the media – and that includes the faux conservative media – and angry GOP voters not bright enough to recognize that while bluster and bombast might make for great reality TV, they rarely make for successful real world leaders, at least other than dictators. While the former two groups can be forgiven for trying to select the weakest challenger to their nominee – after all, that’s just good politics – the latter deserves a particular level of enmity as they profess anger at the establishment and then vote for someone who has spent his entire life canoodling with that very establishment.

Now the question facing many of us is whether or not to pull the lever for Trump or take the quixotic path of supporting a third party candidate. On the one hand it would almost be suicidal to do so – in terms of the pursuit of reviving the Constitution – as Clinton would certainly triumph, but on the other hand, the Constitution stands little chance of surviving regardless of whether Clinton or Trump is elected. The only reason to ever consider voting for Trump in the first place was his promise to build a wall. Given that he told the NY Times that he wouldn’t be building any walls, there is literally zero reason to bother pulling the lever for him.

Whether Clinton or Trump makes it into the White House, the freedoms that Americans used to cherish, free speech, free markets, gun ownership and limited government find themselves on the ash heap of history. Barack Obama started down the strongman path of extra constitutionality, and either Trump or Clinton would pick up that ball and run with it.

The 2016 election is simply lost. Absent some miracle that keeps Trump from the nomination, the 2016 will be the end of the Republican party as we know it, and potentially the Republic as we know it. So the question is, what are conservatives to do? What are those who value freedom and limited government to do? What are those who prefer Madison, Jefferson and Reagan to Marx and Castro and Obama to do? Do we take our lumps, swallow our pride and pull the lever for Trump simply because he’s representing the party ostensibly opposing the socialists? Do we sit out the election so that whichever candidate wins we can honestly say we had nothing to do with the consequences? Or do we do something else?

I’d suggest something else. Given that Donald spells the end of the GOP, why not use 2016 the way the Tea Party did in 2010… build something… but rather than hitching our wagon to the festering, corrupt and debauched Republican Party, build something far superior. Build a party that actually stands for something other than its own power. Build a party that champions real limited government, not the use of government to support big business and hinder small business. Build a party that advances the notion that prosperity is the result of free markets, not government intervention in favored industries. Build a party where free speech and free religion are the valued over the feelings of delicate flowers who are offended by practically everything. Build a party where hard work and individual achievement are valued and empowered rather than punished by confiscatory taxes and government social engineering.

Of course building such a party might guarantee a Hillary Clinton presidency. That’s true, but a Clinton presidency is the likely outcome of a contest against Donald Trump regardless. So be it. I once had a friend who told me she didn’t want to go to college because she was 27 and would be 31 when she graduated. I asked her how old she would be in 4 years if she didn’t go to college… Win or lose, a GOP party headed by Donald Trump is no longer a party that respects the Constitution, is no longer a party that respects free markets, is no longer a party that respects free speech and individual liberty. As such, we can choose to do nothing with the five months until November, or we can choose to do something that lays the foundation of a new party to stand up and challenge the big government GOP Democrat duopoly in 2018 and beyond. (Don’t forget, the GOP itself was founded in 1854 but didn’t win the White House until 1860.) Granted, it will be an uphill battle, and given the track records of 3rd parties over the last century, it may even be a Sisyphean one, but at the end of the day the choices are clear. Stand by and watch as the foundations of your beloved country crumble, or choose to fight to save the Constitution and greatest republic the world has ever known. I hope Ted Cruz is listening and chooses not to go gently into that good night…

The product of a military family, growing up in Naples, Italy and Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and being stationed in Germany for two years while in the Army, Vince spent half of his first quarter century seeing the US from outside of its own borders. That perspective, along with a French wife and two decades as a struggling entrepreneur have only fueled an appreciation for freedom and the fundamental greatness of the gifts our forefathers left us.

31 Responses to “Do Not Go Gently Into That Good Night… Ted Cruz, The Constitution and Third Party Choices”

  1. 2

    DaNang67

    Well, we will soon learn whether or not Soros and company were behind the “Mexican flag protests.” Those came just before the Indiana primary and turned a few more undecided voters into Trumpists.

    John Kasich quit just as soon as the GOPe didn’t need him to weaken Cruz any longer. Let’s see if the Mexican flags disappear also now that the media is turning on the orange guy.

  2. 3

    MOS #8541

    vince,
    you are s sleazy ass democrat. your history is limited to the last cnn broadcast. I have pointed out to you on more than one occasion that you need to read history and get your facts and data in line before you drop another piece of garbage on this site.
    credentials- struggling entrepreneur -democratic looser

  3. 4

    bwax

    Nothing will change until the country goes bankrupt and we have to pull ourselves out of the ashes. That means the welfare system that is the direct cause of the current mess will have to be abandoned. If you are healthy but refuse to work, you get nothing! If you are here illegally, you get sent back! If you aren’t a legally registered voter, you can’t vote!

    There is no longer any incentive to work hard and make it on your own as Big Government has become a nanny state, just like Europe. Big government will not cease until these issues get corrected first.

    The democrats have succeeded in creating a welfare state that votes itself continued benefits (thanks Teddy Kennedy and LBJ). We have lost!

  4. 5

    James Felix

    “why not use 2016 the way the Tea Party did in 2010… build something… but rather than hitching our wagon to the festering, corrupt and debauched Republican Party, build something far superior. Build a party that actually stands for something other than its own power. Build a party that champions real limited government, not the use of government to support big business and hinder small business…”

    Because if there were enough people to make such a party viable we wouldn’t be in this situation in the first place.

    Here are the facts, utterly depressing though they may be: it has been two full generations since civics was taught in American classrooms. It has been one full generation since anything resembling history was taught. The overwhelming majority of voting Americans are completely ignorant of, and detached from, the traditions and philosophies their nation was built on. They get most of their information from Facebook, Twitter and late-night comedians and their worldview reflects this.

    These people can’t be reasoned with because they are literally incapable of reason. They communicate via memes and shouting, they argue by recitation of logical fallacies. That this election has come down to Trump vs. Clinton shows that the nation is, in the long run, doomed.

  5. 7

    Joe McPherson

    It’s obvious that you misidentify a lot of problems. Can’t you see that the current trade situation is destroying the US? Blindly accepting the RINO version of “free trade” can only mean o e of two things.
    1. You actually buy everything on the Conservative platform and dont have an original thought or ;
    2. You own stock in Apple and actually think you can ride cheap chinese labor until the wheels fall off. Big problem there though, 10 million phones that didn’t sell in China are sitting around collecting dust.
    The only thing staunch Conservative platform helps is ” the club”.
    The question is “How do you creed? American? Constitutionalist? Christian? Isms don’t matter.

  6. 8

    secret admirer

    The GOP by not backing the conservative in this race proved it was not going to let 2012 repeat,(tea party got all those seats) the conservative movement that gave them the house and senate majority. The Rinos will tell you what you want, they will own Trump as he has broken his Self Funding promise and is now seeking financial Pacs and donations for the general. Add that to the backdoor amnesty, and his lunatic conspiracy theories twice getting his news from the esteemed National Enquirer, When he tells the truth (not a natural trait for him) about Hillary they can point to that and not have to believe him. Good Job Trump supporters, now as he said he did not need the conservative vote, you clean up this mess, you own it.

  7. 9

    Nanny G

    Given that he told the NY Times that he wouldn’t be building any walls, there is literally zero reason to bother pulling the lever for him.

    Where’d you get THAT, Vince?
    The NY Times hasn’t leaked it.
    Trump hasn’t leaked it.
    The Editorial Board/Trump meeting has never been reported on.
    It was confidential (off the record).
    And BOTH sides have kept their confidentiality agreement with one another.

    Now, I recall a desperate Harry Reid telling America that Mitt Romney hadn’t paid ANY taxes in 10 years.
    It was an UTTER FABRICATION.

    This allegation about what Trump told a NYTimes editorial board has only been touted by Ted Cruz.
    So, where is his source?
    He cannot supply one.
    Might HE be the liar here?
    That seems more likely.

    Vincente Fox has gone from
    DENIAL that Trump will build a wall to
    BARGAINING that Mexico won’t pay for that wall to
    ACCEPTANCE that Trump will build a wall unless a trip to Mexico changes his mind.

    Perhaps American voters should take a lesson from a great negotiator, old Mr. Fox.

  8. 10

    Alan

    “Build a party that actually stands for something other than its own power. Build a party that champions real limited government, not the use of government to support big business and hinder small business. Build a party that advances the notion that prosperity is the result of free markets, not government intervention in favored industries. Build a party where free speech and free religion are the valued over the feelings of delicate flowers who are offended by practically everything. Build a party where hard work and individual achievement are valued and empowered rather than punished by confiscatory taxes and government social engineering.”

    You mean this party?

  9. 11

    Maria

    The one thing 70% of us have said we will NOT do is pull the lever for Trump. The republicans have decided to run a democrat so let them own it. either way a democrat wins.

  10. 12

    Padre

    As for me and my house, #nevertrump means #nevertrump.

    That said, while I welcome a third party option, I think Cruz is damaged goods.

    Like Trump we need someone who can be bombastic and humerous, AND I believe make principled arguments rather than policy shout outs. Trump and Clinton both have no idea how to rebut ideas when not given the opportunity to emotionally attack the policies that logically flow from these ideas. Don’t talk about gun control, talk about the right to defend yourself. Don’t talk about getting rid of the Dept of Ed, but about subsidiarity and letting local parents make most choices for children, don’t talk about abortion but the equal protection of every life. Refuse to be pushed in the corner…make the case for the rule of law… make the case for supermajoritarian argreement to settle difficult issues and states rights when such a settlement is impossible.

  11. 13

    Lynn Tercel

    Third Party or take back the Republican Party from the bottom up. Either way short of a miracle at the Republican convention, a Democrat wins. #NeverEverTrump

  12. 15

    retire05

    @Nanny G:

    Vincente Fox has gone from
    DENIAL that Trump will build a wall to
    BARGAINING that Mexico won’t pay for that wall to
    ACCEPTANCE that Trump will build a wall unless a trip to Mexico changes his mind.

    Really? And Vicente Fox (who is no longer President of Mexico) said that where? I listened to his interview with O’Reilly and he did not say that, not did he say that in other interviews. What he did say was:

    ““I apologize. Forgiveness is one of the greatest qualities that human beings have, is the quality of a compassionate leader. You have to be humble. You have to be compassionate. You have to love thy neighbor. Love your nation. Love the world. Yes, I’m humble enough as leadership be, [a] compassionate leader. If I offended you, I’m sorry. But what about the other way around? I don’t think he should follow the strategy of attacking others, offending others, to get to his purpose. There are other ways and means of doing it. I invite him to come to Mexico and to see what Mexico is all about.”

  13. 16

    Redteam

    Well, that Post by Vince is one of the most convincing arguments I have read for why everyone should vote for Trump: consider:

    a GOP party headed by Donald Trump is no longer a party that respects the Constitution, is no longer a party that respects free markets, is no longer a party that respects free speech and individual liberty.

    That ‘party’ that Vince is trying to portray left Washington back in 1993. Those politicians in Washington now are of the ‘United’ party. United against America. United against the people of America. United to line their own pockets and to make it to their retirement dates to be forever on the Public dime. (except in their case, it’s millions of dimes, hundred of thousands of dollars for the rest of their lives. Why would they want America to change? From their perspective, Let the Good Times Roll.
    To infer that those establishment United Party politicians in any way represent ‘conservatism’ is to be totally ignorant of the meaning of the word. Yes, if Trump doesn’t win, the third party will have been a success, The UNITED PARTY will still be in power.

    why not use 2016 the way the Tea Party did in 2010… build something…

    What did the Tea Party build? Where is the Tea Party today? Has anyone even heard from them in the last 4 years? The only thing I ever hear from them is “send us some more money’.

    Just consider this statement from above:

    Of course building such a party might guarantee a Hillary Clinton presidency. That’s true, but a Clinton presidency is the likely outcome of a contest against Donald Trump regardless

    Got it? The most evil thing for the country would be a government led by Hillary, so let’s all go out and vote for someone(a third party) that will guarantee Hillary a win. Really, That’s kinda like, I’m having a hell of a time walking so I think I’ll shoot myself in the foot to see if it will help.

    So let’s analyze this:

    So now we have it… A GOP nominee selected by Democrats, the media – and that includes the faux conservative media – and angry GOP voters not bright enough to recognize that while bluster and bombast might make for great reality TV, they rarely make for successful real world leaders,

    “by Democrats, the media – and that includes the faux conservative media – and angry GOP voters not bright enough ” you left out ‘conservatives damned tired of electing ‘faux conservatives that turn out to be members of the UNITED PARTY. So, intelligent voters have given us Obama for two terms because those ‘brilliant’ TRUE (LOL) conservatives gave us the great true conservatives McCain and Romney as candidates. Boy did that work out well, if you’re a socialist liberal. Who would these TRUE conservatives give us if they had free rein? Jeb Bush? (ole, tear down that wall Jeb, let’s get them Mexicans in here now) Cruz? A Canadian, Cuban, possibly American? Rubio? An anchor baby.
    Yes, let’s all take Vince’s advice and surrender to the UNITED PARTY.

  14. 17

    Redteam

    @secret admirer: You missed nearly all of your points:

    The GOP by not backing the conservative in this race

    and who would that be. I didn’t see any ‘conservatives’ lot’s of rino’s, no conservatives.

    they will own Trump as he has broken his Self Funding promise

    BS , his statement was: “I’m self-funding my own campaign. It’s my money.” See anything in that where he pledges to not take any contributions? Do you believe he is not ‘self funding’ his campaign?

    Add that to the backdoor amnesty, and his lunatic conspiracy theories twice getting his news from the esteemed National Enquirer,

    there is no ‘back door’ amnesty. You’re thinking of Rubio and McCain there. What’s wrong with getting news from the National Enquirer? Don’t they have a right to print news. Nothing he quoted from it was incorrect. Are you not for a free press?

    Secret Admirer: of who?

  15. 18

    Redteam

    @Alan:

    You mean this party?

    Chuckle. I read that whole page where they talk about their candidate and all he will do, but they never tell us who this miracle worker is. Who is their candidate. This mythical figure that most people will have never heard of ‘after the election’.

    Where do these people come from?

  16. 19

    Nanny G

    @Alan:

    Ah!
    Gary Johnson!
    He said he’d wipe the floor with whatever outsider tries to infiltrate his party.
    That’s his message for Republicans flirting with the idea of taking over the Libertarian Party to run an anti-Trump candidate for president.
    http://blogs.wsj.com/washwire/2016/03/22/gary-johnson-says-libertarians-will-welcome-gop-interlopers-and-then-crush-them/

    Someone had to go out looking under trees to find the pot-smoker and get this comment from him.

  17. 20

    Redteam

    @Nanny G:

    Of the 15 Libertarians listed as a presidential candidates on the party’s website, Mr. Johnson by far has the highest political profile.

    And he’s a pot head.

  18. 21

    Pete

    The only available option to stem the otherwise inevitable march towards collectivist insanity is to vote and elect conservatives to both houses of congress. If Hillary ends up winning, AND has a spineless congress, the last 7 years of economic decay and cultural corruption will accelerate.

  19. 22

    Nanny G

    @Redteam: So, intelligent voters have given us Obama for two terms because those ‘brilliant’ TRUE (LOL) conservatives gave us the great true conservatives McCain and Romney as candidates. Boy did that work out well, if you’re a socialist liberal. Who would these TRUE conservatives give us if they had free rein?

    The “Never Trump” sect wants to follow Romney into some 3rd party option.
    But here’s an interesting fact:
    There were more ”Never Romney’s,” than there are ”Never Trump’s.

    Through May 3rd, 2016:

    2016: Donald Trump won 40.4% of vote, everyone else 59.6%
    2012: Mitt Romney won 37.5%, everyone else 62.5%
    https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1ANtm93SYnUZHwNHa5L4CP_FBuZlK4ZdURK4syH8Izo4/edit?pref=2&pli=1#gid=641641647

    The “Never Trump” people are nothing more than DC beltway party ideologues and those who make a living from them or are their useful idiots.

  20. 23

    vince

    @Nanny G: I’m pretty sure there was never a “Never Romney” movement. Conservatives such as myself were not happy with Mittens, nor McCain, but would vote for them knowing that at a minimum they would not be as bad as whatever the Democrats produced. With Trump on the other hand, that assurance does not exist. The guy has been a liberal his whole life, is a bit unstable and has little regard for the Constitution. That’s not a ringing endorsement for the GOP. As you can see by that reptile Kasich staying in the race until Cruz exited, the GOP establishment would rather have Donald Trump rather than Ted Cruz. He is more than willing to make deals, to abandon principles… assuming he had any, in order to get something done. That is exactly what the GOP has been doing for decades, and with Trump they will continue to be able to do so, if he gets elected. If he doesn’t the GOP can try and use anger against Clinton to raise money and engage conservatives. That will not happen again.

  21. 24

    Ditto

    I see a lot of new names around here, what a surprise that they are talking about needing to vote third party. Funny that they are talking about how Trump as being some kind of super-secret Democrat double-agent plant, when all the Democrats, the GOPe, and the Press has done little but attack him and try to show him in as bad a light as possible, told all of us he never had a chance, the polls, tea leaves and pundits all agreed. But, WTF, he almost has the nomination nailed-up, Yet, most of the GOPe who said all Republicans who should support the nominee whoever it is, are now saying that they can’t.

    And how so unexpected that those new posters claim to be Republicans/Conservatives but are suddenly abandoning the party for, …third party candidates like Libertarians, Bernie (…Wait, isn’t he Democrat now?)

    And here we have all these self professed ‘super- conservatives’ who have been with us, despising the GOPe and the Washington establishment, but because they aren’t getting the (ahem) “outsider” they wanted (ie. Cruz) and instead got another outsider (Trump), who is also promising to do exactly what we and the TEA Party has been wanting “so-called” conservatives to do (but haven’t). So now their attitude is “Well, hell! It don’t matter that he wants to do what we all wanted our candidate to do, He ain’t good enough because he ain’t no bible thumping conservative that only conservatives would vote for, so we’ll just stay home and let the Hildabeast win!”

    I smell the inelegant bouquet of a mixed potpourri comprised of troll sh*t and sour grapes.

  22. 25

    Nanny G

    @Ditto: I see a lot of new names around here, what a surprise that they are talking about needing to vote third party.

    Great point.
    New names.
    How about we take a look at what an old name said:

    You want a unity speech, I’ll give you a unity speech.
    I don’t care who our candidate is and I haven’t since the beginning of this.
    I haven’t.
    Ask not what a candidate can do for you, ask what you can do for the candidate.
    And that’s what the Tea Party is.
    We are there to confront them on behalf of our candidate.
    I will march behind whoever our candidate it because if we don’t we lose.
    There are two paths.
    There are two paths.
    One is America and the other one is occupy…
    And when I walk through CPAC or when I travel the United States to meet people in the Tea Party who care, black, white, gay and straight.
    Anyone who is willing to stand next to me to fight the progressive left, I will be in that bunker.
    And if you’re not in that bunker because you’re not satisfied with this candidate – more than ‘Shame on you’ You’re on the other side.

    From one of his last public speeches at CPAC in February 2012, Andrew Breitbart.

  23. 26

    Ditto

    @Nanny G:

    For the most part I agree with the late, great, Breitbart. We should note that Breitbart did not side with the Republican establishment, the Democrats, crony capitalists or the MSM. I seriously doubt he would have supported any of the GOPe’s chosen puppets. I do theorize he would have held his nose and still voted for whomever the Republican nomination went to, but he would have still held their feet under the fire, every single time they strayed from the conservative/TEA Party platforms.

    Trump is not perfect, but he is still a US loving patriot, and a hell of a lot better than what the Democrats have to offer.

  24. 27

    Aqua

    I did not like Ted Cruz as a presidential candidate. I’m fine with him in the Senate. I would even like to see him or someone like him take Scalia’s place on the court.
    It is nearly impossible today to find a republican presidential candidate. The party is so fractured no one can make everyone happy. Mitt Romney was a horrible candidate, but he would have been better than Obama. John McCain was a horrible candidate, but he would have been better than Obama. Now we have Trump. I didn’t vote for Trump in the primary. I was leaning between Kasich and Rubio, I picked Rubio. I just didn’t see Kasich making it very far and I thought Rubio still had a shot. I would have been much happier voting for Rick Perry. There are some that I would have like to seen in the race: Mary Fallon, Susana Martinez, or Mike Pence.
    But we have Trump. And Trump is better than Hillary.
    Vince says we need a reset, like the Tea Party year. Well, Trump could be that reset. People are tired of the republicans in congress. They don’t know how to win anything. Sometimes I don’t even think they are trying to when the cameras are off. I’m interested in seeing what Trump can do. Is he going to disappoint me? Yep. Dubya disappointed me. His domestic policies were abysmal. He dad was a huge disappointment. But I know exactly what it’s going to be like if Hillary becomes president. I’ll take my chances with a little disappointment and a glimmer of hope.

  25. 28

    Redteam

    @Ditto: Ditto, your full comment 24 is excellent. Now I won’t have to write that very message. The True (whatever that means) Conservatives wanted exactly what they got in Trump, except he doesn’t call himself a True(whatever that means) Conservative. Is he the only one of the 17 Republican candidates that are going to uphold their pledge to support the ultimate nominee?

  26. 30

    Ditto

    Thank you Redteam and Nanny G I wrote that after getting fed-up listening to many of the GOPe “faithful” and the “true conservatives” blathering about ‘how they can’t hold their nose and vote for Trump,’ when Trump is supporting probably 90% of what the silent majority wants. Is he perfect? of course not. Yet Trump has received more minority votes in the primary than the GOPe ever thought they could get, (including winning over 50% of the total Hispanic vote in New York state). Is he bombastic, angry and a “name caller? Of course he is, but so has been the leftist opposition for decades while the GOPe candidates for the last 30 years have either run away from a political fight or worse meekly surrendered. Trump’s loud-mouth and ungentlemanly behavior reflects the anger of base conservatives and the silent majority, who have been cursing at their television screens, because neither political party has been listening to them for over 30 years. We are fed up with being patted on the head and then stabbed in the back. And that folks is why Trump is now the presumptive nominee. The GOP has been saying for years that we need a moderate who will bring in new voters and appeal to independent voters, The conservatives have been hoping for a candidate who would finally get the tings they want – done. And the voters who have been staying home because none of the candidates in the last 30 years has listened to them are finally excited and energized. Now quit pissing and moaning and get with the f*cking program.

    Want some news that will make our resident trolls go bonkers?

    Political science professor forecasts Trump as general election winner

    Norpoth created a statistical model of presidential elections that uses a candidate’s performance in their party’s primary and patterns in the electoral cycle as predictors of the presidential vote in the general election.

    Donald Trump has a 97 percent chance of defeating Hillary Clinton and a 99 percent chance of defeating Bernie Sanders in the general election, according to Norpoth’s formula.

    “The bottom line is that the primary model, using also the cyclical movement, makes it almost certain that Donald Trump will be the next president,” Norpoth said, “if he’s a nominee of the [Republican] party.”

    Norpoth’s primary model works for every presidential election since 1912, with the notable exception of the 1960 election. These results give the model an accuracy of 96.1 percent.

    Norpoth began the presentation with an introduction of the potential matchups in the general election, including a hypothetical Sanders vs. Trump general election.

    “When I started out with this kind of display a few months ago, I thought it was sort of a joke.” Norpoth said referring to Trump and Sanders, as many alumni in the audience laughed. “Well, I’ll tell you right now, it ain’t a joke anymore.”

    As the presentation continued, laughter turned to silence as Norpoth forecasted a 61 percent chance of a Republican win in the general election.

    This forecast was made using the electoral cycle model, which studies a pattern of voting in the presidential election that makes it less likely for an incumbent party to hold the presidency after two terms in office. The model does not assume who would be the party nominees or the conditions of the country at the time.

    “You think ‘This is crazy. How can anything come up with something like that?’ ” Norpoth said “But that’s exactly the kind of equation I used to predict Bill Clinton winning in ‘96, that I used to predict that George Bush would win in 2004, and, as you remember four years ago, that Obama would win in 2012.”

    Norpoth then added data from the New Hampshire and South Carolina primaries to narrow down the forecast to specific candidates. As he brought up the first slide with matchup results, the silence was broken by muttering from the audience.

    “Trump beats Hillary 54.7 percent to 45.3 percent [of the popular vote]. This is almost too much to believe.” Norpoth said, with a few members of the audience laughing nervously. “The probability of that [outcome] is almost complete certainty, 97 percent. It’s almost ‘Take it to the bank.’ ”

    The primary model predicts a Trump victory with such certainty due to Trump’s relatively high success in the Republican primaries, Norpoth said. Clinton, in comparison, is in an essential tie with Sanders in the Democratic primaries. As a result, Sanders would also lose to Trump in a similar landslide if Sanders were to be the Democratic nominee, Norpoth said.

    In contrast, Norpoth forecasted that a hypothetical presidential race with Ted Cruz or Marco Rubio on the Republican ticket would be a much closer race. The results showed Clinton with a 55 percent chance of winning the race against Cruz or Rubio with a 0.3 percent lead in the popular vote.

    Norpoth’s model showed Sanders losing against Rubio or Cruz with a 0.6 percent gap in the popular vote, giving a Rubio or Cruz ticket a 60 percent chance of winning against the Vermont senator.

    Norpoth added that while the non-Trump Republican ticket would be much more unlikely to win the general election due to differences in the popular vote and the electoral college vote, there is almost no chance that Trump would lose the electoral college vote with his forecasted lead in the popular vote.

    “If you win by 54 percent [of the popular vote], you have a big majority in the electoral college,” Norpoth said. “Nobody who has ever gotten 54 percent has lost.”

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