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Colorado May Cost Ballistic Donald Trump the Republican Nomination

By Dustin Rowles | Politics | April 11, 2016 |

By Dustin Rowles | Politics | April 11, 2016 |

Last week, NPR’s Politics Podcast — as they do on most episodes — ran down what percentage of the remaining delegates each of the remaining presidential candidates needed to secure the nomination. I think Ted Cruz needs 80-something percent; John Kasich has been mathematically eliminated, and before Saturday, Trump needed 58 percent of the remaining delegates.

There was not a primary over the weekend, but nevertheless, Donald Trump now needs 60 percent of the remaining delegates. Ted Cruz took advantage of Trump’s lack of organization in Colorado and took all 34 delegates there on Saturday. Colorado didn’t actually have a primary. They decided to take themselves out of the primary process this year and let the national delegates choose their own candidate through the caucus process. Every one of the 34 chose Ted Cruz.

Trump was not happy.

Trump has no one to blame for himself. He badly mishandled the delegate caucus, made basic mistakes on sample ballots, and allowed Cruz to be the only candidate to speak during the state convention.

He screwed himself.

Cruz also used superior organizational skills to grab a few more delegates in Iowa and Virginia over the weekend.

Now Trump needs 60 percent of the remaining delegates. Trump hasn’t won 60 percent of the vote in any state yet, and while many of the remaining states are winner-take all, that only matters in most cases if a candidate receives 50 percent of the vote. With John Kasich still in the race, it’s unlikely that Trump will command 50 percent of the vote in many of those states (except maybe New York), meaning that a contested convention is looking more and more likely.

In a contested convention, Trump is unlikely to win, which means that either Trump attempts to run as a third-party candidate or a large segment of the Republican party will be shut out and angry because their candidate was not selected.

In other words, the GOP is going to shatter into a million pieces come convention time.

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Dustin is the founder and co-owner of Pajiba. You may email him here, follow him on Twitter, or listen to his weekly TV podcast, Podjiba.