The race to be Republican nominee for this year’s US Presidential election witnessed its latest episode of drama this weekend in South Carolina, with Donald Trump claiming another victory.
The Palmetto State’s Primary on Saturday evening saw Trump come good on his expected success, but the margin of his victory was less than the polls had envisaged.
The businessman claimed 32.5 per cent of the vote, 10 per cent ahead of Marco Rubio, who edged Ted Cruz into third by just 0.2 per cent.
South Carolina’s results did see one previous favourite quit the race however, as Jeb Bush ended his presidential bid.
According to the Washington Explorer among others, no Republican candidate has failed to win the nominee after claiming victory in South Carolina and New Hampshire, and Trump has done exactly that.
The former US Apprentice host is 10/11 favourite to be the Grand Old Party’s nominee, but it’s Rubio who is on the move, with the Junior Senator for Florida seeing his odds come in from 5/2 to 5/4 second favourite after a flurry of bets placed across the weekend.
It was a bad result for Cruz, who failed to really hit home with Evangelicals, and odds for the 45-year-old drifted well out from 6s to 16s.
Cruz’s hopes now rest on a strong performance on Super Tuesday, where a host of southern states go to the polls.
Should the likes of Arkansas, Tennessee and Georgia also fail to back the Junior Senator for Texas however, his campaign is all but over.
Bush’s departure is also a by-product boost for Cruz, with Trump’s campaign enjoying the fact that people who opposed him had so many options to choose from, and thus were split.
As candidates drop one by one, Cruz will naturally gain voters and votes to become the prominent anti-Trump candidate.
The Republican race shifts west to Nevada on Tuesday, with Trump all set for another victory in a state where his Vegas connections should hold him in good stead.
Claiming three of the opening four states is as good as the real estate mogul could have hoped for when launching his candidacy last year, but while Trump has stated in a television interview that he’s “going to win”, Cruz is right there, and could still throw in a major surprise when Super Tuesday arrives.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.