Today’s elections promise to deliver more bad news for anti-Trump Republicans. Trump enjoys significant leads in both Michigan and Mississippi, which offer the largest delegate hauls today, and Trump may be poised to win in Idaho as well. It’s possible Rubio could surprise with a good showing in Hawaii, but no one really knows what to expect there. There are also hints that Trump may be able to win Hawaii.
Delegate allocation for all four states is proportional. Michigan and Mississippi have a 15% threshold that could end up leaving Rubio with no delegates in either state. Idaho has an even higher threshold at 20%, and has switched to having a primary instead of the caucus they had four years ago. Trump tends to fare better in primaries, and he has polling leads in all three of the primary states today.
Three more victories for Trump would solidify his status as front-runner, and sweeping all four states would be an embarrassment for his opponents. Even if he comes away with only Mississippi and Michigan wins, Trump will have demonstrated that he can prevail in very different parts of the country. It would also show that Trump keeps beating Kasich in blue states while also beating Cruz in most Southern states, and that bodes well for his chances next week in all of the March 15 contests. The other candidates will likely be fighting with each other for bragging rights about second-place finishes in different places. If there is a big surprise anywhere tonight, I assume it would be a win for Kasich in Michigan, but I don’t think it will happen.