One of the key metrics behind that scenes that few are talking about publicly right now is the delegate forecast for the 2024 Republican presidential primary. This is simply a forecast based on all the aggregate polling in the 50 states. How many delegates is each candidate projected to win once the primaries start.
Behind the scenes, they have now hit a critical mass point for the Ron DeSantis campaign. Things are so bad that DeSantis will hold crisis talks with the billionaire GOP donors next week.
As for the billionaires, they’re on the verge of abandoning DeSantis and shifting their support to Sen. Tim Scott (R-SC).
Once the primaries begin, the first person to reach 1,234 delegates becomes the nominee. That’s the number of delegates needed to clinch a victory.
Back in February of this year, Ron DeSantis was riding high in the delegate forecast. In fact, behind the scenes it looked like he would be the 2024 nominee instead of Donald Trump.
On February 25th, DeSantis was projected to pull 1,413 delegates. That would make it a close race, but with DeSantis pulling out the win.
The reasoning behind this was obviously all the dumb lawsuits and indictments on false charges against President Trump. People were thinking at the time that Trump was vulnerable.
But then… Ron DeSantis launched his campaign.
On May 25th, the day after the #DeSaster on Twitter, the delegate projection for Ron DeSantis plunged to 834. Plans are great until the bullets start flying, right? Much of the goodwill and expectations that the DeSantis campaign would sort of know what they were doing evaporated in that moment.
834 delegates would still be highly competitive. When Trump won the nomination in 2016, he had 1,441 delegates and had won 41 states. Ted Cruz had 511 delegates from 11 states. Marco Rubio had 173 from 3 states. John Kasich somehow had 161 delegates, all from his home state of Ohio.
Ted Cruz seemed like he put up a not-totally-embarrassing fight in 2016, but only ended up with 511 delegates. So, 834 for DeSantis would be a respectable amount.
He hasn’t stayed there, however. The more that the American people see the way that Donald Trump is being targeted illegally and unjustly by the Biden regime, the more they are flocking back to Trump. The more that DeSantis gets out in front of people and starts speaking, the more his support plummets.
As of mid-July, Donald Trump is now projected to win 2,050 delegates in the primaries, with Ron DeSantis only pulling 405. We’ve still got another six months before the voting even starts, but it’s looking grim for the DeSantis campaign. Trump is even projected to win a decisive victory over DeSantis in Florida.
When asked about his awful polling last week, DeSantis changed the subject and ended up having to brag about all of the huge corporate donors he has. That’s obviously not a good look to those of us in the MAGA crowd.
DeSantis has scheduled crisis talks with many of those corporate donors for next week. He needs to convince them that he’s in this fight for the long haul, because if his cash dries up now, the race will be over very quickly.
The donor class, meanwhile, has learned none of the lessons from that bruising 2016 primary, when they played candidate ping-pong for months in a feeble attempt to slow Trump down. The donors would be excited about Jeb! one week and then they’d decide Rubio was the chosen one and then they’d throw their support behind someone else.
It might already be too late for DeSantis. At least three of his corporate backers have already flown to South Carolina to meet with Tim Scott. They’re thinking about jumping off the DeSantis ship.
Tim Scott won’t fare any better if they do throw their support behind him. As we’ve mentioned previously, Tim Scott is the preferred candidate of the sliver of Republican voters who think that Mike Pence should dial back the intensity a little.
He seems like a really nice guy. If Tim Scott was your neighbor, he’d probably give you a ride to the airport if you needed a favor. But that’s not what Republican voters are looking for. We don’t need a friendly neighbor. We need a fighter that can win the general election, and we all know exactly who that is.