Donald Trump is on a glide path to the GOP nomination. After Ted Cruz bowed-out of the race, there was only Trump.
Well, technically there was John Kasich, too, but he didn’t really count.
Trump is riding high as the presumptive GOP nominee- so high, in fact, that he has told West Virginia voters that they don’t need to vote in the west Virginia primary.
In Charleston on Thursday, Trump told an enthusiastic crowd to not bother coming out to vote for the state’s May 10th primary.
“And now, what I want you to do is save your vote. You know, you don’t have to vote anymore. Save your vote for the general election, okay? Forget This one,” he said. “The primary is gone. Save your vote for the general election in November and we’re gonna show you something and you’re gonna show me something, okay? Look at that.”
The problem, however, with Trump’s urging is that his insistence to not vote will likely adversely affect down ballot races. Contrary to what Mr. Trump may believe, his endeavor is not the only race occurring. West Virginia, like every other state, has other offices to fill- local and state offices- and his urging either illustrates a shocking ignorance of what is included on ballots, an off-putting egotism or both.
West Virginia’s Sec. of State Natalie Tennant chimed-in with a tweet emphasizing as much, saying, “It’s irresponsible to tell people not to vote. Too many have died for our right. Plus local & down ballot races are so important.”
Hours later, Trump reversed course (as he is prone to do) and tweeted: “Thank you West Virginia. Let’s keep it going. Go out and vote on Tuesday – we will win big. #Trump2016”
Even if Trump cares nothing for the other candidates that would have the misfortune to share the ballot with him, he also seems to miss a very important point:
Trump may be the presumed nominee; however, he still needs to receive 1237 delegates. Without reaching that threshold, the vote goes to a second round at the convention and all bets are off. Cruz may no longer be actively working to siphon-off delegates from Trump, but that hardly means that Trump has no benefit to finishing the race off strong. Without 1237, the race can begin anew and Cruz is in a position to take the nomination on the second ballot.
But don’t tell Mr. Trump that…