Another Tuesday and another set of primaries, this time in Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania and Rhode Island. On the Republican side in total 172 delegates are available. Donald Trump still needs 392 pledged delegates to get to the 1237 that guarantee him the nomination, and he leads in the polls in all states. On the Democratic side the number of available delegates is 463. Hillary Clinton still needs 955 pledged delegates if superdelegates are not taken into account, but only 437 if none of her superdelegates change their minds, which is more than likely. She too leads in all the polls. I started watching MSNBC at 5 pm, not because it’s the only news channel in my cable package (I have them all, and about 1000 other channels), but because it has the best election coverage. It will be a busy but probably a short election night, because the polls in all states close at 8 pm and I don’t expect many ‘too close to call’ results, just a few ‘too early to call.’ Until the numbers come in the usual pundits can discuss the exit polls, as long as they don’t forecast the final results, and the GOP version of the Stalin-Von Ribbentrop pact, the agreement between Ted Cruz and John Kasich to try and stop Trump.
If Stalin and Hitler had been as effective as Cruz and Kasich, Poland would never have been occupied. Kasich’s supporters hate Cruz, and Cruz’s supporters don’t care for Kasich, who already undermined the pact by saying that his supporters in Indiana should vote for him, even though he won’t campaign there, while the whole idea was that Cruz would sweep Indiana’s 57 delegates to keep Trump from reaching his goal, while Kasich would do the same in New Mexico. In the meantime the Donald is exhibiting his substandard English lexicon by trumpeting through all his channels that Cruz and Kasich are ‘colluding,’ which is not the case. Colluding means coming to a secret understanding for a harmful purpose, and although Trump may consider his potentially being shut out in Indiana and New Mexico harmful, Cruz and Kasich have made no secret of their alliance, which has therefore become the laughing stock of the media. On the Democratic side most of the talk is about by how much Hillary will win, and if Bernie Sanders will go on campaigning even though he won’t have a path to the nomination anymore. He has already said that he will campaign until July, and Hillary won’t ask him to stop, so it’s really a moot issue.
At 6 pm Chuck Todd hands the coverage over to Brian Williams and Rachel Maddow. Williams is still rehabilitating himself after telling a story about flying in a helicopter that was attacked that turned out to be a fantasy, which cost him his prime time anchor spot. Maddow is the smarty pants of MSNBC and gets all the best interviews. Their main sidekick is Steve Kornecki, who knows everything about every congressional district in the US and shows his data on a large touchscreen at breathtaking speed.
The cast further consists of Nicole Wallace, a former GOP operative who is still recuperating from the assignment to get Sarah Palin ready for prime time in 2008, Eugene Robinson of the Washington Post, always a voice of reason, and Mark Halperin and John Heilemann of Game Change fame. Chuck Todd is also still chipping in, as well as four female correspondents who follow the five remaining candidates.
It’s now 7:45 pm, and soon Brian Williams will announce the last commercial break before the results come in. Hopefully the races will be called immediately, and if I skip the obligatory victory speeches by Trump and Hillary I can switch to the New York Yankees game that starts at 8 pm in Arlington, Texas.