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What Is Happening in South Carolina? And What To Watch On Primary Night

February 19, 2016

Many are still predicting that Donald Trump will top the field after the votes are counted in Saturday’s South Carolina Primary.  That may very well happen, but the point spread may be a great deal closer than some once thought to be the case.

Trump is now leading Saturday’s South Carolina Republican primary by only 5 points — down from his 16-point lead in the state a month ago, according to results from a new NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist poll.

Trump gets support from 28 percent of likely Republican primary voters in the state, while Ted Cruz gets 23 percent. They’re followed by Marco Rubio at 15 percent, Jeb Bush at 13 percent, and John Kasich and Ben Carson at 9 percent each.

I am keeping my eyes on two things.

First the sweep up in the numbers on primary night for John Kasich.  I expect the softer toned styling of the Ohio governor is going to appeal to many voters.  I will be not be surprised to see him land in second place when the counting is over.

The second fight within the larger brawl is how Jeb Bush does relative to Marco Rubio.  My gut tells me that Rubio still feels the sting from a bad debate performance.  More importantly once again the old Bush family magic will move Jeb’s number higher than those of the Florida senator.

Ben Carson brings up the rear–where else should an ass be?–but that is fine with him as he is not in this campaign for delegates but rather cash.

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