This is the website of Abulsme Noibatno Itramne (also known as Sam Minter). Posts here are rare these days. For current stuff, follow me on Mastodon



April 2024

Republicans: Everything falls into place for Trump

Trump did very well yesterday in PA/MD/CT/RI/DE.

In pledged delegates the results were Trump 110, Kasich 5, Cruz 3.

That is a crushing win, but that is not why I say everything is falling into place. Trump did a little better than expected in pledged delegates, but a massive Trump win had been expected for awhile. This was not a surprise, and was already baked into people’s projections for the rest of the race.

Even with this built into the expectations, as of my post last week we were looking at odds between about 40% on the low side and 64% on the high side for Trump actually getting to 1237 delegates and having an outright majority before the convention. A week later, several things change that and make an outright Trump win look far more likely, and a multi-ballot convention much less likely. If it isn’t the pledged delegate results from last night, then what is it?

The first thing is the officially uncommitted delegates from Pennsylvania. In past contests Trump has done a horrible job getting his loyalists into the slots that are nominally uncommitted, or for that matter even into the slots that are bound to him on the first ballot. It was plausible to expect that Trump would do similarly poorly with Pennsylvania’s uncommitted delegates which are elected by name on the ballot… without any indication on the ballot of who they support.

But Trump appears to have gotten his act together, making sure delegate slates were available to Trump supporters and such. Between delegates that explicitly said they support Trump, and those who said they would vote the way their district went (and all of them went for Trump), Trump ends up with 45 of the 54 uncommitted delegates by my estimates. There is some ambiguity in the statements made by some of these uncommitted delegates and some other folks have estimated the number of Trump votes slightly lower. But all the estimates have Trump winning most of these delegates.

This was unexpected, and also gives more confidence of Trump’s delegate wrangling abilities going forward. (Although Pennsylvania was the biggest pot of uncommitted delegates.)

Add in the uncommitted delegates that have expressed a preference (45 Trump, 3 Cruz, 3 Kasich, 3 TBD) and 2 additional uncommitted Cruz delegates from North Dakota that I logged in the last week, and the net change since New York ends up as:

Trump +155, Cruz +8, Kasich +8.

The new raw totals look like this:


The finish line is in sight. Trump only needs 233 delegates to win this thing directly. No multi-ballot convention, just a straight up win on the first ballot.


For the first time since Super Tuesday at the beginning of March, Trump also actually has a majority of the delegates so far… 52.32% of the delegates.

But what does it take to keep that? Time for the “% of remaining delegates needed” graph:


First note that with yesterday’s results Cruz has been mathematically eliminated from the possibility of a first ballot victory. Trump is now the ONLY candidate that can win on a first ballot. Everybody else is done unless there is a brokered convention… or I suppose unless Trump drops out or something crazy like that.

Looking directly at Trump’s line… Trump needed 53.52% of the delegates to improve his position. Since New York he actually got 90.64% of the delegates. This obviously means his position improved a lot. He now only needs 42.06% of the remaining delegates to win.

That means he could do 20% worse at delegate gathering in all the remaining contests than he has so far and still win.

If the Republicans allocated delegates proportionately everywhere like the Democrats do, this would clearly be over. It would be Trump’s nomination, and we’d be done.

Because of how so many Republican states tilt the delegate results to the winner though, if the anti-Trump’s were strong, there would still be a path to block Trump.

The anti-Trump scenarios that gave us odds of a multi-ballot convention relied on three things.

The first we mentioned above… Trump’s failure to win delegates when they were selected individually instead of being bound to primary results. Trump dispensed with that in Pennsylvania.

The second was Indiana. Until the last week, Indiana had not been polled. The anti-Trump contested convention scenarios all relied on Trump losing Indiana. Well, last week Indiana was finally polled. Three times. The results? The RCP average has Trump +6.3%. Given Indiana’s delegate rules, a win like that would get Trump most of Indiana’s 57 delegates… possibly all of them. Oops. And Trump now only needs to be getting 42% of the delegates to be on pace to win.

The third was California. Trump has been ahead in the polls in California forever. But the anti-Trump folks were hoping to keep him from winning by too much and to hold down his delegate total. But in the last week of polling, Cruz has been falling and Trump has been rising, so Trump’s margins have just been growing. RCP now has a 17.4% Trump lead in their California average. Assuming Trump wins Indiana and some of the other remaining states, Trump will very likely only need 30% or less of the delegates in California in order to wrap things up. If he is winning by almost 20%, that is going to be very easy to achieve.

The simulator at The Upshot using default assumptions now shows an almost certain Trump win.

The FiveThirtyEight simulator “follow the experts” model shows Trump 27 votes short of the magic number… but they don’t include ANY of the officially uncommitted delegates that have said they support Trump. Add those in… there are just under 50 of them now depending how you count… and you are easily over 1237.

Finally, Sam Wang’s numerical simulations of the rest of the race have moved from a 64% chance of a Trump win a little over a week ago to a 94% chance today.

I see no reason to disagree with this estimate.

We are no longer on a knife’s edge between a contested convention and an outright Trump win.

#NeverTrump is now hanging on by a thread. They maybe aren’t quite as far gone as Sanders is on the Democratic side, but it is getting close. Their last hope is to try to start turning things around with a surprise win in Indiana. Even with that though, Trump’s odds look very good.

Between yesterday’s results, polls in Indiana, and polls in California, this now looks like an almost certain outright Trump win.

This is now Trump’s to lose. Given everything he has done so far that pundits thought would sink him but in fact only strengthened him, it is hard to see how exactly that would happen.

So… time to start paying more attention to Clinton vs Trump. Right now that looks like Clinton 338 to Trump 200, a 138 electoral vote win for Clinton. But things are still early, and that will change…

Update 2016-05-02 17:52 UTC: Uncommitted delegate update plus adjustment in Rhode Island. Net change: Trump +1, Cruz -2.

Update 2016-05-03 03:53 UTC: Uncommitted delegate update checking multiple sources. Net change: Cruz +2, Kasich -2, Trump -4. (See my wiki for my current best estimates of uncommitted delegate preferences.)

Update 2016-05-04 08:11 UTC: Updates (including uncommitted) in Nevada, Wyoming and North Dakota. Net change: Cruz +6, Carson -2.

Note: This post is an update based on the data on Election Graphs tracks both a poll based estimate of the Electoral College and a numbers based look at the Delegate Races. All of the charts and graphs seen in this post are from that site. Additional graphs, charts and raw data can be found there. All charts above are clickable to go to the current version of the detail page the chart is from, which may contain more up to date information than the snapshots on this page, which were current as of the time of this post. Follow @ElectionGraphs on Twitter or like Election Graphs on Facebook to see announcements of updates or to join the conversation. For those interested in individual general election poll updates, follow @ElecCollPolls on Twitter for all the polls as they are added.

Democrats: Clinton wins PA/MD/CT/RI/DE by 218 to 166

Even the Sanders folks are starting… just starting… to admit it might be over.

Clinton won 218 delegates yesterday. Sanders won 166.

In addition, since New York there were new superdelegate endorsements and updates in Illinois and Ohio which have netted Clinton +9, Sanders +1.

So including everything since New York, we have Clinton +227, Sanders +167.

That means Clinton got 57.61% of the delegates. She only needed 28.73%.

Meanwhile Sanders got 42.39% of the delegates. He needed 71.39%.

In practical terms this has been for over a long time. Absent a huge unexpected event of course.

But we still watch it play out.

Here are the relevant graphs:



Clinton now only needs 231 of the remaining 1200 delegates to win. That’s 19.25% of the remaining delegates.

Sanders on the other hand needs 971 of the 1200. That is 80.92%.

Guess which is most likely?

Or, of course, still, tons of Clinton superdelegates could defect and change this a bit. I wouldn’t hold my breath for that though.

Update 2016-05-01 17:08 UTC: Superdelegate updates plus change to Ohio pledged delegates. Net change: Clinton +11, Sanders -1.

Note: This post is an update based on the data on Election Graphs tracks both a poll based estimate of the Electoral College and a numbers based look at the Delegate Races. All of the charts and graphs seen in this post are from that site. Additional graphs, charts and raw data can be found there. All charts above are clickable to go to the current version of the detail page the chart is from, which may contain more up to date information than the snapshots on this page, which were current as of the time of this post. Follow @ElectionGraphs on Twitter or like Election Graphs on Facebook to see announcements of updates or to join the conversation. For those interested in individual general election poll updates, follow @ElecCollPolls on Twitter for all the polls as they are added.

Electoral College: 01:15 – Lots of states, All expected

Romney Obama
Romney Best Case 310 228
Current Status 206 332
Obama Best Case 190 348

There were no states called between 00:45 UTC and 01:00 UTC so there was no 01:00 update.

But there were tons of states called between 01:00 and 01:15 though.

  • Obama: CT, DE, DC, IL, MD, MA, ME-All, ME-1, RI
  • Romney: OK, GA

I also corrected the light blue line in the chart, which I’d neglected to decrement when Romney won South Carolina. That line represents the states where Romney was ahead by more than 5%, but less than 10%.

The three scenarios remain the same though, as no close states have been called. In 2008, since McCain’s best case was still to lose, I also tracked a “McCain SuperBest” case on election night, the case where he would have won all the states he was behind by less than 10% in. That was to keep it interesting in a race that wasn’t close. No need for that this time.

This time we wait for the states that are actually close.

2012 Republican Delegate Count: It Is Over (DC, MD, WI and ND Update)

Charts from the 2012 Republican Delegate Count Graphs page. When a candidate gets down to 0%, they have cinched the nomination. If they get up past 100%, they have been mathematically eliminated. The first chart is by date, the second is by “% of Delegates Already Allocated”. These numbers include estimates of the eventual results of multi-stage caucus processes which will be refined as the later stages occur.

So… this is it. Long ago any realistic possibility for any non-Romney to win the nomination disappeared. With today’s update the already long odds for the non-Romneys to keep Romney from getting to 1144 essentially drop to zero. This is over. Romney wins. Without any sort of brokered convention. For something else to happen now we’d need some event that was so earth shaking that Romney dropped out. This is extremely unlikely.

Details below.

We have updates from four contests. In alphabetical order:

  • DC: DC is winner take all, Romney gets all 16 delegates.
  • Maryland: Maryland is not actually winner take all, you get some delegates for winning the state, and then more delegates go to the winner of each congressional district. But Romney not only won the state, but every congressional district. So Romney gets all 37 delegates.
  • North Dakota: North Dakota had the first round of its process in March. At that time the delegate estimate was Santorum 11, Paul 8 , Romney 7 , Gingrich 2. But the state Republican Convention happened last weekend, and Romney supporters owned the parliamentary process, taking the lion’s share of the delegates despite coming in third in March. That’s how it works in caucus states sometimes. It took a couple days for Green Papers to confirm a new estimate, but it now looks like Romney 20, Santorum 6, Paul 2. So the net today is Romney +13, Gingrich -2, Santorum -5, Paul -6.
  • Wisconsin: Wisconsin also allocates some delegates based on both state and CD winners. Romney won the state. Romney won 5 CDs. Santorum won 3 CDs. So overall we have a delegate count of Romney 33, Santorum 9

Add those up and we have a net total for today of Romney +99, Santorum +4, Gingrich -2, Paul -6 Obviously Romney completely dominated the day.

In terms of “% of remaining delegates needed to win” we have this:

  • Romney: 47.3% -> 42.5%
  • Santorum: 71.8% -> 77.5%
  • Gingrich: 80.5% -> 87.5%
  • Paul: 86.8% -> 94.6%

The also-rans who left the race early on… Bachman, Huntsman and Perry… are mathematically eliminated after today. Paul, Gingrich and Santorum will inevitably join them soon.

The blocking Romney option? At this point the non-Romneys collectively would need to get 57.5% of the remaining delegates. So far they have managed 42.6% of the delegates. A change of this sort, while not mathematically impossible, would be unprecedented, especially since we are in the phase of the campaign where it is clear Romney is winning and the others are losing. People just stop voting for losers. As things go on, the % of delegates the non-Romneys get will probably actually decline. A major increase is just not going to happen.

It is over.

(We will of course continue to update these charts until Romney actually gets to 1144 however.)

Stupid Self-Correction on MD and WI

Sometime a few weeks ago I looked at the upcoming states and misread something and got it stuck in my head that DC, MD and WI were all winner take all states. I then repeated that a number of times on this blog and in my podcast.


DC is indeed winner take all, but MD and WI are only “Winner take all by State and Congressional District”. So some delegates are chosen winner take all by the state results, and then additional delegates are allocated for the winners of each congressional district. So not really WTA.

Oops. Sorry about that. In any case, when I post delegate updates they will of course reflect the actual delegate distributions, not my imaginary winner take all results. This does mean that today will probably not be quite as much of a knockout punch for Romney as I expected, but it is looking to still be a pretty decisive victory, certainly more than he needs to be on pace for 1144.