FLORIDA – Donald Trump sports a comfortable 11 point lead in the Sunshine State, besting Ted Cruz 32-21%. Marco Rubio, who is from Florida, picks up 18% of the vote.
While most states, especially the ones that vote before March 15th, are competitive for Cruz and Rubio in the sense that they can at least win some delegates, Florida issues all of theirs to the person with the most votes. Finishing 2nd or beyond gets you 0 delegates, while 1st place gets 99. Right now, in order for either of them to win anything in Florida, they would have to un-seat Trump from the driver’s chair.
Marco Rubio holds a very large advantage with the Hispanic vote, beating Jeb Bush by 24 points. The popularity of Rubio among Hispanics in Florida is why he is comparatively high in the Presidental Percentages updates, when compared to Ted Cruz. This is primarily because Rubio has a better chance than most of the other candidates of winning Florida during a general election,
By the time the March 15th primaries get here, there will have already been 1,025 delegates awarded, all of them proportionally, but with varying threshold requirements. On the 15th, an additional 361 will be awarded, pushing the total to 1,386 (out of ~2,470). For lower-tier candidates who cannot mathematically get to 1,236 (the number required to win the nomination), who are still in it, it’s game over. The magic number is 152 – any fewer delegates than this, and they cannot win.
As it stands, Trump, Cruz, and Rubio will all probably have over 152 delegates after the 15th, while any of the other candidates will be lucky to have more than 1/3rd of that number. (read more)