Ted Cruz has been busy over the last month handing Donald Trump’s backside to him in the delegate game. Things have gotten so bad for Trump that he’s basically resorted to openly calling for violence from his supporters at the convention because he knows the writing is on the wall if he doesn’t cross the 50% threshold.
However, Donald Trump is not even the biggest loser in the delegate so far – that honor by far goes to John Kasich. Kasich’s entire plan for getting the nomination has centered on his ability to win at a contested convention. He’s utterly failed to convince Republican voters to support him, but he had hoped to convince delegates at the convention to do so.
However, it appears that Kasich has lacked either the interest in selecting actual delegates that Cruz has had, or an inability to meaningfully sway the delegate selection process. I guess Kasich just figured that he could show up to the convention and that whoever happened to be there would be open to the siren call of his excessively twitchy face and his fake dopey nice guy act.
What Kasich did not count on was that Ted Cruz would see the contested convention coming and pack the delegate pool with people who were personally loyal to him. Late in the game, Trump has also decided to put some effort into making sure that at least some of his pledged delegates are personally loyal to him as well. The end result of this wrangling is that there is a shrinking pool of “unclaimed” delegates who don’t have personal loyalty to either Cruz or Trump that Kasich might even potentially claim.
Over the last month, Ted Cruz has put a huge dent in Donald Trump’s chances to win the nomination. But he has absolutely killed John Kasich’s chances. At least Trump still has the possibility that he might reach 1,237 delegates; Kasich has been mathematically eliminated from that on the first ballot, and it looks increasingly like he will be on subsequent ballots as well.