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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

George LeMieux: Hillary Clinton likely wins Fla without Bush or Rubio as GOP nominee



Republican former Sen. George LeMieux's latest Tampa Bay Times op ed column notes that Florida could once again be pivitol in picking the Republican presidential nominee:

...As the campaign for the Republican nomination stands, Cruz with his strong support among Christian conservatives looks to be the likely winner in Iowa, with Trump well positioned to win New Hampshire. South Carolina and the "SEC" primary strongly favor Trump and Cruz, whose brands of conservatism should be well received there. One, maybe two other candidates, will make the cut with second- or third-place finishes in the early states. If the field pares down, center-right candidates like Sen. Marco Rubio, former Gov. Jeb Bush, Ohio Gov. John Kasich and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie may emerge as viable alternatives. This will only happen if the field narrows and the so-called establishment candidates can consolidate the vote. If the field does not narrow, Trump or Cruz will run the table.

In 2000, Florida decided the presidential election. In 2008, McCain clinched the nomination by winning the Florida primary. Florida is well positioned to give one of its favorite sons, Bush or Rubio, the chance to win a major, winner-take-all primary and change the dynamics of the race. Ironically, Bush and his former protégé, Rubio, may split the center-right vote and clinch the race for Cruz or Trump....

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[Last modified: Wednesday, December 16, 2015 12:23am]


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