Wisconsin and women problems knock Trump off course a little

EDITORIAL

The defeat of Donald Trump in the Wisconsin Republican primary has been welcomed by many in the “Grand Old Party” and conservative US media, with some pundits even saying this could be the beginning of the end for the bombastic billionaire. That might be a case of wishful thinking.

The next contest, on April 19, will be in Trump’s home state of New York where 95 delegates will be selected. Trump has a big lead in opinion polls — the most recent gave him 52 percent.

There is another problem for his main challenger Ted Cruz in that Ohio governor John Kasich is strong in the north-east, actually polling second in New York.

Everything went wrong for Trump in Wisconsin where his attitudes towards women, and low polling with them, came to the fore after he said women who had abortions where it was illegal should be prosecuted — a position that he hastily tried to reverse.

Then his campaign manager Corey Lewandowski was charged with battery for pulling the arm of reporter Michelle Fields, although news footage indicated this might be an over-reaction from Florida police — more a case of rudeness in the bedlam of a US election rally than actual violence.

Nevertheless Trump needs to pick up momentum in New York and push on to the goal of 1237 delegates needed to secure the nomination at the July 18-21 convention. At present he has 743, Cruze 517 and Kasich 143.

There are some big prizes ahead including Pennsylvania (71) a week after New York, while California (172) on June 7 could well be pivotal.

This has been the most closely watched Republican contest for many years, principally because of Trump’s bluster, his popularity and fears of what he might do if he first became the candidate, then president. But it is a long and complicated process. For instance in some states the winner takes all while in others they are awarded proportionally. Also, many delegates are only committed to a candidate for the first vote at the national convention.

The Donald is still most likely to be the Republican nominee come July but he has a long way to go.

The defeat of Donald Trump in the Wisconsin Republican primary has been welcomed by many in the “Grand Old Party” and conservative US media, with some pundits even saying this could be the beginning of the end for the bombastic billionaire. That might be a case of wishful thinking.

The next contest, on April 19, will be in Trump’s home state of New York where 95 delegates will be selected. Trump has a big lead in opinion polls — the most recent gave him 52 percent.

There is another problem for his main challenger Ted Cruz in that Ohio governor John Kasich is strong in the north-east, actually polling second in New York.

Everything went wrong for Trump in Wisconsin where his attitudes towards women, and low polling with them, came to the fore after he said women who had abortions where it was illegal should be prosecuted — a position that he hastily tried to reverse.

Then his campaign manager Corey Lewandowski was charged with battery for pulling the arm of reporter Michelle Fields, although news footage indicated this might be an over-reaction from Florida police — more a case of rudeness in the bedlam of a US election rally than actual violence.

Nevertheless Trump needs to pick up momentum in New York and push on to the goal of 1237 delegates needed to secure the nomination at the July 18-21 convention. At present he has 743, Cruze 517 and Kasich 143.

There are some big prizes ahead including Pennsylvania (71) a week after New York, while California (172) on June 7 could well be pivotal.

This has been the most closely watched Republican contest for many years, principally because of Trump’s bluster, his popularity and fears of what he might do if he first became the candidate, then president. But it is a long and complicated process. For instance in some states the winner takes all while in others they are awarded proportionally. Also, many delegates are only committed to a candidate for the first vote at the national convention.

The Donald is still most likely to be the Republican nominee come July but he has a long way to go.

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