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April 21, 2016 11:12 AM UTC

House: Trump can fall short of magic number and still win

  • by: Jason Salzman

(Everybody say “Thanks, Steve!” – Promoted by Colorado Pols)

houseforgopchairFormer Fox 31 Denver political reporter Eli Stokols writes that GOP operatives see mogul Donald Trump winning the GOP nomination if he gets close to the magic number of 1,237 delegates.

Colorado GOP chairman Steve House appears to agree, according to Stokols’ post yesterday:

When the convention opens in Cleveland in mid-July, roughly 200 delegates will arrive as free agents, unbound by the results of primaries or caucuses in their states. Trump’s campaign is confident they can win as many of them as they must in order to get to 1,237 on the first ballot.

“Trump has to get to 1,237, but there’s a lot of talk about, ‘What is the real number?’” said another RNC member. “Whatever half the uncommitted number is, that’s probably a reasonable number.”

“I think a lot of people think if he gets within 50 to 100 [of 1,237], he’ll be able to carry it,” said Steve House, Colorado’s GOP chairman and an unbound delegate already being courted by the Trump and Cruz campaigns.

House hasn’t said how he’d vote, but he validates the point that Trump has a serious shot a locking up the nomination during the first round of voting at the GOP national convention in Cleveland, even if he doesn’t arrive with all the delgates he needs.

This is a substantial departure from the narrative you hear most often in the news, that Trump has to have the full 1,237 going in to win on the first ballot.


24 thoughts on “House: Trump can fall short of magic number and still win

    1. Modstradamus predicts:

      Total distraction. Gessler is the only Republican who can win, and he will win the primary. In two weeks we'll be having a very different conversation.

      Yet again, electoral wisdom was revealed:

      You think you're so smart but you're too clever by half. It's true that Carson has been campaigning hard in CO, but the real story is Marco Rubio AHEAD of Trump and closing fast on Carson. Mark my words, as the primary moves out of silly season, Rubio is the candidate to watch.

      Third time lucky?

      1. Extremely unlikely.  Moddy's finger might be on his own pulse, but not on the pulse of the voters.  Guy can scarcely rent a clue and show him a picture of Michael Coffman's wife and what little sense he has flies out the window.

    2. Never say never, Moddy…..

      House is playing a very cleaver game here. He oversees this rules change to ban the straw vote at the caucuses, then there is the state convention/assembly at which Cruz cleans up, and now House breathes life into Drumpf's hopes of winning the nod if he shows up with a big enough plurality of delegates.

      Thanks, Steve!


    3. I don't know whether Mr. House is incompetent or nonsensical but on this scenario he is right. If Mr. Trump is close to winning outright on the first ballot, the Party, no matter how much some of them dislike him will, at their peril, deny him the nomination.

      At this point Mr. Cruz is merely a convenience for the people who want to deny Mr. Trump the nomination. He is the convenient vehicle, literally the only one, who has even a small chance of stopping Donald Trump but that doesn't translate into support for him if he is successful on that count.

      You need to keep in mind that Mr. Trump, for all the criticism you've leveled at him, is by far the leader in total Republican primary votes and delegates. It is also an indication that a huge swath of the Republican Party is done with the hard right ideology that has dominated the party since 1980 for a very simple reason – they haven't benefited from it. A case in point – supply side economics. Under Republican ideology tax cuts always equate to more economic activity and in turn, more tax revenues than before the tax cuts. In mathematical terms, supply side economics can be summed-up this way: 4 – 2 = 6. Unfortunately, after trying this three times on the federal level and in many different "Red" states the answer has always been "2." Many people in the Republican Party, including Trump voters, are tired of the dead-end ideology the Party has insisted on pursuing over the past 35 years that hasn't worked. Mr. Trump's voters want to breakout of that pattern and they are willing to follow someone who is willing to disenthrall themselves from the past and think anew. They sense that Mr. Trump is such a candidate. Forcing the old ways down the throats of the Trump voters will do great harm to the Republican Party.

        1. Nuh uhn….Lyin'Ted …all the way…he doesn't have a snowballs' chance in hell in the general…Trump does.

          And you might not have noticed ol' Modster…but, I'm a liberal.

        2. Whether liberals are for or against Trump is irrelevant. The old right-wing ideology has turned into a thin swill. Many Republican voters are simply fed-up with litmus tests and ideology that adds nothing to their lives and ends in meaningless obstructionism, especially in Washington, DC. Trump seems to want to break the logjam Republican ideology has created.

            1. Yes, I do. I'm not supporting Mr. Trump but the one thing he is doing is undermining the far right's hold on the Republican Party. For far too long, the Republican Party has been dominated by people who place ideology over everything else. That has led the Party into a corner it keeps painting smaller and smaller. If a person doesn't pass the litmus tests every time its given, the Party doesn't want you. That attitude has led the Party into supporting mindless positions (i.e. supply side economics) that experience and facts undermined years or decades ago. Having an Ideology and political/policy philosophy is fine but no one's analysis and perspective should end there. Facts matter and sometimes the facts don't support or, in part, don't support one's ideology and philosophy. Reality must be recognized and dealt with. Ramming a square peg through a tiny round hole doesn't work. Mr. Trump, for all his faults and in many cases silly policy positions, is the agent who is blowing holes in the bubble the far right has constructed over the past three and a half decades. And for that, I thank him.

              That is also the reason we've seen such an anti-Trump reaction within the ranks of the Republican Party. He has actually had the gall to think about things differently than ideologues like Mr. Cruz and in the Republican world such heresy isn't tolerated. Mr. Trump has been successful because many of the Republican voters have concluded that far right ideology has not benefited them at all and they are correct.

              1. Trump's popularity within the party, though – and with those he's dragged in by force of personality – is precisely a vocalization of many of those right-wing priorities.

                Trump can get away with saying things like "invading Iraq was a bad idea", but only for the same reasons he can say "remember 7/11" – his charisma (which I don't get) allows his supporters to override some basic beliefs so that they can continue to say they support the hate.

                Trump isn't saving anything within the GOP. He's forcing some of the still-extant "establishment" to say "no, no – we don't stand for that!" even while they're working to support exactly that position in legislation around the country, but he has done nothing IMHO to move the party except possibly even more into open bigotry.

                Trump is no different for the GOP than the Sharon Angle's and the Todd Aikin's of past elections – candidates who openly and undiplomatically say the very non-Christian things that the party believes but wants sugar-coated. The RNC said it right after losing in 2012 – they don't want to change their party values, but if only their messaging was a bit better, people would love what they were offering.

        3. So what? Liberals have no control over your damn caucuses and primaries. The number giving up the chance to support Bernie or HRC to use primaries to mess with Rs is too tiny to have any significance. If you're left with Trump or Cruz, don't blame us.

    4. 16 from Delaware, 38 if he sweeps Maryland's CDs, 71 from Pennsylvania, 57 if he sweeps Indiana's CDs, 51 from New Jersey, 22 from Connecticut if he wins each CD by just 1 vote, win RI by 1 vote and he gets 10: that puts him at 1111.

      Then there's California. If he sweeps it, that's 172 delegates. That's 1283. He clinches it. If he wins only half of its CDs, that's 91. That's 1202. 35 short.

      Get just one delegate out of Oregon, New Mexico, Washington and each of its CDs, and you're at 1215. 22 short.

      West Virginia is Trump country, with 34 delegates at stake. Easy to imagine him winning a majority. Even if its razor-thin, that's 19 delegates (since 3 go to the statewide winner). 3 delegates short. Three.

      There are 132 uncommitted delegates. In the worst conceivable situation, given current polling, Trump would only need to buy off three delegates to secure the nomination.

      And that’s being overly generous to the performance of Cruz and Kasich.

  1. I find it hard to believe that the party would deny Trump the nomination if he's within the superdelegate margin of victory. There will be hell to pay if they don't nominate him at this point regardless of his overall delegate count; he's the only one even close to an outright majority.

    1. OK but I'm pretty sure the reason it looks so weird is because it's not a toupee but an elaborate, sprayed into place, multidirectional comb over (and under and around and through). 

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