Tuesday Night Memo

Esteemed Associates:

It is just after 9:00 as I wrote you this note, urging you to be looking in on the news websites later on tonight for updates.  In addition to anything else you look at, here are the numerical updates from today’s primary elections, at Politico:  http://www.politico.com/2016-election/results/map/president.

Here’s what we know now:

(1) Marco Rubio lost his home state of Florida to Ted Cruz and has pulled out of the race.  (Story here.)

(2) John Kasich has just been announced the winner in his own state of Ohio.  (Story here.)  In order for that to really change anything, he needs to pick up a momentum now that he hasn’t had before, and it will really help if Trump does something outrageous that alienates his power base.  The trouble is, Trump may well have been right when he said that he could stand on Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody and they’d still vote for him.  (I did mention to you, didn’t I, that I do not understand my country at all?)

(3) Hillary Clinton seems to be prevailing over Bernie Sanders across the board.  (Story here.)

(4) There may be a new conservative party forming now.  (Story here.) This is a brand new development and I have no idea how far it will go,  Realize this, though: the idea of a separate conservative party, like all kind of separate “third parties”–that’s not what’s new here.  What’s new is that so many Republicans find the Republican front runner so repulsive and loathsome that they would rather see the Republican Party lose than see Trump win. Second, if this new party does field a major candidate, their top concern won’t be winning this year (which means they won’t mind that they’re helping the Democrats win), but the start of a new movement.  In other words, we may be seeing a permanent realignment, with the fracturing of the Republican Party as we know it.  As I’ll be saying more about in class, the Donald Trump campaign is not, by any means, the only factor threatening to break up the Republican Party.  It may, however, be the most deadly.

Okay, that’s all.  Keep checking the news, post your thoughts on the discussion board (or right here, if you like), and I’ll see you all in our next class.


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