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Dems in dead heat; Trump 'winning'

Posted at 9:22 AM, Feb 24, 2016
and last updated 2016-02-24 09:23:25-05

Are you sick of Trump winning yet? You can at least say he’s kept his promise…

Nevada makes three in a row for Donald Trump and the next finisher isn’t even close behind him. Trump won the Nevada caucus with 45.9 percent of the vote, as of Wednesday morning, networks hadn’t called second place as Rubio and Cruz were still very close, as they were in South Carolina but with Rubio a little ahead.

Trump gave his normal victory speech, full of pride and thanking Nevada voters.

In a bizarre turn, Marco Rubio chose not to talk. Fox News reported that Rubio would not be speaking but in fact that “the senator has gone to bed.”

That is a strange departure for someone who has played it well on primary nights by giving inspirational, impressive speeches and acting like the winner.

Whether he’s exhausted, it’s a strategy or he’s having trouble juggling the exhaustive campaign trail with his Senate job, he’s starting to get a reputation for skipping or backing out on important events.

When Ted Cruz spoke, his speech and demeanor seemed to still be dejected but made the case that he believes the election is down to him and Trump, citing that no one has gone on to be the nominee without winning one of the first three primaries (Iowa, New Hampshire or South Carolina). Cruz also currently has one more delegate overall than Rubio.

The third time is the charm for Hillary as she finally had her first clear win in Nevada, though it wasn’t as decisive as Trump’s in South Carolina or even what polls said up until the final weeks. She should definitely feel Bernie’s breath on her neck (sorry for that image). With Bill by her side, you could tell she was excited to give her victory speech.

It’s interesting to see how Bernie’s success as affected her speeches, wage inequality among other fiscal issues are becoming bigger themes.

Bernie still gave a good speech, which was pretty much his typical stump speech win or lose. He’s trying to keep his campaign’s energy and stated his campaign still has the momentum, saying he still believes that at the Democratic National Convention later this year, his campaign will cause the “greatest political upset in the history of the United States.”

Earlier last week, the polls correctly predicted Trump winning decisively again in South Carolina. Marco Rubio also repeated his primary night performance from Iowa in that he acted like the winner and took the momentum from the night. Regardless of whether you are a Rubio supporter or not, you can’t argue that he isn’t an impressive, attractive candidate who radiates youth and positivity and gives a positive, inspirational speech. This could be especially important as Democrats like to paint Republicans as the party of old, white, rich men; the picture on stage in South Carolina Saturday evening with a young, Latino Senator, a young Indian-American female governor, and a young African-American South Carolina Senator certainly contradicts that. Rubio’s line about “the children of the Reagan Revolution are ready to assume the mantle of leadership” will no doubt inspire many conservatives watching.

While Trump was declared the decisive winner early on, networks held off calling second and third place as Cruz and Rubio remained a hair apart. However, they both chose to speak before the results were known. Rubio spoke second, again, capturing the moment and giving the appearance he’d already locked in that spot. Cruz didn’t speak until later and unfortunately when he did, he acted like the loser. He seemed tired and dejected, possibly because he traveled to Washington earlier on Election Day to attend Justice Antonin Scalia’s funeral service (not to mention the exhaustion there must be on the campaign trail), but still, presentation is everything. The lighting seemed dimmer and while he gave his normal talking points, he seemed to be having trouble getting his audience energized and engaged.

The other big headline for Republicans was Gov. Jeb Bush got out of the race. He gave a classy speech that was consistent with how he ran his campaign. His too little, too late last effort with losing the glasses and trying to poke and provoke Trump in the debates did not work, as no one expected them to. Remember over the past couple of years when he was the projected front-runner? A lot of it probably has to do with voters who are angry or just tired of hearing his family’s name in the White House. The other half did not consider him conservative enough. He also failed to run a “high-energy” campaign; while the dynamics would have been different without Trump in there, it’s still doubtful he would have been the front runner for very long once things got started.

Though they are accomplished men, Carson and Kasich need to look at the writing on the wall and get out, they’ve failed to get the numbers and Kasich apparently didn’t entice enough women out of the kitchen to vote for him.