Analysis: Deace’s Super Tuesday Results Notebook

Is there any question we are down to a two-man race?

Trump — By His Standards — Gracious in Victory

After two big wins (Illinois & Florida), two split decisions (North Carolina & Missouri), and a big loss (Ohio), by his standards GOP frontrunner Donald Trump was short and gracious in his victory speech Tuesday night. Perhaps the reason why is because although Trump obviously had a good night, he’s not really any closer to winning the nomination outright than he was coming in when you do the math.

Rubio Finally Figures It Out — Albeit Too Late

In maybe the most stirring concession speech by a Republican presidential candidate since Ronald Reagan in 1976, Florida Senator Marco Rubio reminded everyone why he was once considered the future face of the GOP. During his speech, Rubio acknowledged conservatives and the establishment weren’t looking for a consensus candidate like he tried to be this time, with frustration between the two sides at an all-time high. Rubio’s closing message talked about the need to return to conservative principles, as well as a need for a new GOP not run by elitists. The speech also included the sort of Biblical imagery that makes the party establishment roll their eyes but inspires the base.

In other words, Rubio returned to his roots while dropping out, his career coming full circle. If not for the Gang of Eight, it’s likely Rubio would’ve won this GOP primary in a cake-walk, and would be well on his way to being the next president of the United States. The Gang of Eight will go down as the costliest mistake by a Republican politician since President George H.W. Bush violated his “read my lips no new taxes” pledge, which made him the rare victorious wartime election loser. Rubio’s demise will be a cautionary tale for political scientists for years to come.

Florida Voters Send a Message

In a resounding rebuke of its home-state Senator, Florida Republicans weren’t just sending a message to Rubio but to Republicans nationwide: don’t go back on your word and remember the people who got you where you are.

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Source: Analysis: Deace’s Super Tuesday Results Notebook