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Donald Trump (Again) Outmaneuvered Over Convention Delegates

April 1, 2016

So much for Donald Trump being the smartest person in the room, with the biggest brain.  So much for Trump having the most savvy skills for deal making.  The best read of the day comes from Politico about how Trump is being played all the way to the Republican convention.

In Texas they might say of this orange-skinned man, “All hat, no horse.”

Perhaps the most glaring warning sign for Trump is the looming battle for delegates in Massachusetts. Trump scored 49 percent of the vote there, 31 points ahead of second-place Kasich. Cruz finished a distant fourth with 9.6 percent. Yet, it’s Cruz who seems to have the momentum as the state GOP prepares to hold Congressional District conventions and a state party meeting that will elect 39 national delegates.

“The Trump campaign hasn’t really gotten out of first gear, but the Cruz campaign is starting to accelerate,” said Brad Wyatt, a longtime party activist who’s not aligned with either the Cruz or Trump camps. Another top Massachusetts Republican, speaking on condition of anonymity said that at best, Trump will find himself in a dogfight for delegates in the state, despite his dominance at the polls.

The cause seems clear to many party insiders: Trump cleaned up among Massachusetts’s huge population of independent voters. But delegate elections are restricted only to the state’s much smaller population of registered Republicans, many of whom more naturally line up with Cruz. That scenario could play out across the country in states that held open primaries, since Republican Party rules limit delegate selection contests to registered Republicans.

“In order to get into the [delegate] caucuses, you have to be a registered Republican by February 10,” said Massachusetts state committeeman Reed Hillman, a Kasich supporter. “That’s going to change the dynamics in terms of the universe of potential participants. The Trump percentage will be significantly lower. The caucuses — I think they’re going to have a lot of energetic people showing up for either Kasich delegates or Cruz delegates.”

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