What do two 40-something Cubans have in common? Probably a lot, but just not enough to end this contest. Of all the nomination contests so far, Donald Trump has won most of them, Ted Cruz has been second place in total and second place in general, and Marco Rubio has prevailed in exactly 1 state.
As of Saturday night, 773 delegates have been determined on the Republican side. Trump has 45%, Cruz has 35% and Rubio has just over 15%. Rubio would have to win 2/3 of all the delegates outstanding to win the nomination. Trump or Cruz would have to score above half of the delegates remaining.
The fairly obvious strategy is that while Marco Rubio has no chance, a tag team of losers like Rubio and Kasich could possibly leech enough delegates from Trump to have an outright advantage in the delegate count, especially if Cruz competes for the conservatives directly. Then the GOP picks the winner on the second ballot (probably Kasich) and offers Rubio the consolation prize of VP.
I don’t like telling Rubio and Kasich voters this, but your vote for Rubio or Kasich probably means a Hilary Clinton victory. A Trump win probably means the GOP “negotiates” Trump into picking Rubio for VP as a unifying move. If you want Rubio as VP, voting for him in a primary may be your best move, but he won’t be the nominee.
Cruz is the last guy running to outright beat Trump. It’s a tough run and he’s barely keeping up. More votes are moving from Rubio to Cruz’s column, but Rubio’s presence will eventually drag down Cruz.