Donald Trump Has a Huge Tuesday

Editor’s Note: This article previously appeared in a different format as part of The Atlantic’s Notes section, retired in 2021.

Tuesday night was a good night to be a frontrunner. On the Republican side, Donald Trump racked up a series of wins, even though he couldn’t snatch Ohio away from John Kasich. For the Democrats, Hillary Clinton defied expectations and doubts and scored wins in Ohio, Florida, North Carolina, and Illinois. The politics and policy crew liveblogged every twist and turn, and I’ve got the instant reaction:

Tuesday night was a very good night for Donald Trump—but was it good enough?

The entertainer consolidated his lead in the Republican Party and drove Marco Rubio to drop out of the race. Trump scored a huge win in Florida, taking the state’s 99 delegates and humiliating Rubio, a son of the Sunshine State who couldn’t win at home. But Trump’s failure to beat John Kasich in Ohio will prolong the race—and increases the odds that Trump will not win the 1,237 delegates he needs to secure the GOP nomination outright over Kasich and Senator Ted Cruz. Falling short would lead the party to a contested convention with unpredictable and volatile results.

Republicans are left to choose what sort of catastrophic conclusion they’d like for the primary campaign: a Donald Trump nomination? Or a fractious, chaotic contested convention? On Tuesday, GOP voters lurched uneasily toward the latter.

Read the whole thing here.