Wednesday, March 16, 2016
Donald Trump has won the Republican presidential primary in the important winner-take-all state of Florida, getting the states’ 99 delegates to the national convention.
Meanwhile, Ohio Gov. John Kasich scored his first win of the primary season, in his home state, NBC News reports. Ohio, with 66 delegates, is also winner-take-all.
With 57 percent of precincts reporting shortly after 8 p.m. Eastern, Trump had 45 percent of the vote, Florida Sen. Marco Rubio 27 percent, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz 17 percent, and Ohio Gov. John Kasich 6 percent, according to the Associated Press. As expected, Rubio’s failure to win his home state meant the end of his campaign.
Addressing supporters, Rubio said that while he had tried to offer a “hopeful and optimistic” message, it didn’t resonate with voters in a year when many are angry. “After tonight it is clear that while we are on the right side, this year we won’t be on the winning side,” he said.
He urged voters not to give in to “fear and frustration,” and he said the very fact of his candidacy indicated that the U.S. is still an exceptional nation.
Rubio, one of the last hopes of establishment Republicans, had won only the caucuses in Minnesota and Washington, D.C., and the Puerto Rico primary.
In Ohio, the AP called the race for Kasich about 9 p.m. Eastern. As of that hour, with 6 percent of precincts reporting, he had 43 percent of the vote, Trump 34 percent, Cruz 15 percent, and Rubio 5 percent. Kasich is another establishment hope, but it will be difficult for him to catch up to Trump.
Others voting today: Missouri, another winner-take-all state, has 52 delegates. Illinois has 69, of which 15 are awarded on a statewide winner-take-all basis, with 54 determined by congressional district. North Carolina has 72, awarded proportionally. There are nine winner-take-all delegates from the Northern Marianas Islands.