Polls have a feedback loop. When a candidate is ahead in the polls, they are more likely to stay ahead in the polls. And simple name recognition can help them to get that early lead. As a household name, Trump already had that recognizability which undoubtedly worked in his favor early on but the media emphasized that by relentlessly covering every word and every move of the billionaire.
As the New York Times showed earlier on today, Trump was essentially given free publicity. He spent far less on presidential ads than other candidates ($10m compared to Jeb Bush’s $82m) but earned $1,898 in media exposure from free coverage of his campaign. No other candidate comes close to that.
Then came Clinton’s first big win of the night: Florida. The crowd erupted into deafening applause. Wins in North Carolina and Ohio, where the race between her and opponent Bernie Sanders was expected to be close, followed.
Then the crowd erupted in wild cheers and chants as Clinton emerged on stage. She smiled brightly, turned and waved to the crowd that encircled the podium.
“This is another Super Tuesday for the campaign,” Clinton says. “Thank for Florida, thank you North Carolina, than you Ohio.”
The crowd went wild again. By the end of the night, Clinton said, her campaign expected to expand its lead over Sanders to more than 300 pledged delegates – nearly enough to block his path to the nomination.
With Tuesday night’s wins, her campaign can confidently say it swept the south while rebutting the argument that she is a regional candidate whose wins are concentrated in states that Democrats don’t win in a general election. At this stage, she’s won the battleground states of Florida, Ohio, North Carolina, Virginia and Nevada.
The backdrop of the event – from the Latin music to the Spanish signage – worked as a reminder of the diverse coalition that has so far powered her biggest wins yet. Latinos and especially black voters have been at the heart of her string of major victories. While Sanders has made marginal gains among Latino and black communities, he has been unable to draw these voters away from Clinton in large enough numbers to make a difference.
During Clinton’s victory speech, she trained her fire on Donald Trump, who after big wins on Tuesday is increasingly likely to be the Republican nominee.
“This may be one of the most consequential campaigns of our lifetimes,” she said. “The next president will walk into the Oval Office next January…”
“YES SHE WILL,” someone in the crowd shouted.
Clinton continued: “... sit down at that desk and start making decisions that will affect the livelihoods of everyone in this country, indeed everyone on this planet.”
In the past week, Clinton has attempted to distinguish herself from Trump on an international stage, noting in the CNN debate earlier this week that she had world leaders reaching out to her about the tone and tenor of the election.
“Our commander in chief has to be able to defend our country, not embarrass,” Clinton declared in her remarks on Tuesday night. Clinton railed against Trump’s most controversial proposals, including his calls for mass deportations of all undocumented immigrants and barring Muslims from entering the US, as well as his embrace of torture.
“That doesn’t make him strong, that makes him wrong,” she declared.
Though results were still pending in two states by the time her speech ended, Tuesday night clarified and all but cleared Clinton’s path to the nomination, pushing her campaign into a new and unpredictable stage of the race.
Trump congratulates Rubio
Trump addresses supportersHere’s Trump at Mar-a-Largo. Three wins tonight so far, one loss – and the Missouri result to come.
Trump wins IllinoisTrump has just been projected the winner of Illinois by AP, his third win of the night. Illinois Republicans will award 69 delegates proportionally.
Trump projected to win North Carolina
With 52 Republican delegates (distributed on a winner takes all basis) and 84 Democratic delegates available in Missouri, this will be an interesting primary.
Race updates: Illinois, Ohio, North Carolina
Beth Ehrbar, a Berea resident who works at the university and used to be a constituent of Kasich’s during his time as a Columbus-area Congressman, declared herself “very excited!”
“I see John Kasich as a compassionate conservative,” she added, “and I’m very drawn to that.”
Compassionate conservativism – once used by George W Bush to describe his mixture of personal empathy and conservative policy prescriptions – has been key to Kasich’s campaign the last few months, as he’s tried to separate himself from the politics represented by Donald Trump, Ted Cruz and, more recently, Marco Rubio.
A few feet a way, a group of Alpha Sigma Phi fraternity members from Baldwin Wallace were celebrating the win. Patrick Hoang said that he voted for Kasich in Tuesday’s primary because “I believe John Kasich is the best candidate – and I wanted to be part of the effort to stop Donald Trump.”
“I’m really looking forward to a brokered convention,” he added. “I believe neither of them [Cruz or Trump} would be a good fit for the presidency.”
Austin Hermann, said, “I’m from Pennsylvania, so he has my vote there” on 26 April.
Ryan Ginley was even more enthusiastic. “He supports the red, white and blue, the constitution and our country, so I support John Kasich” – who, it should be noted, was himself an Alpha Sigma Phi brother, according to the Baldwin students.