Sanders Looks Ahead As Clinton Wins 4 More; GOP Race Down To 3 Candidates
STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:
Let's talk through last night's election results, starting with Susan MacManus. She is a professor of political scientists here at the University of South Florida. We're at WUSF. She's in our studios. Good morning.
SUSAN MACMANUS: Good morning.
INSKEEP: So we've heard the headline results. Clinton won Florida. Trump won Florida. What stands out beyond that for you?
MACMANUS: Some key things looking ahead to the November election - first of all, I think it's really interesting how well Hillary Clinton did among the Hispanics in Florida. There had been up to this point, you know, some question about whether she was able to garner the Hispanic vote. She's doing very well with black voters across the country, but she made it very clear here in her victory that she can carry the Latino vote.
INSKEEP: Which is a big deal, I guess, for the general election because the Latino vote is so huge here. And it's a huge state in the general election.
RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:
Let meet - may I get in here and you, Susan McManus? Trump won a state, as you've just said, with a large Latino population - although he did not do very well with Latinos. Does that suggest he could still win Florida in a general election?
MACMANUS: Well, it's going to be a real battleground for the Latino vote. It's around 17 percent of the registered voters. And of course, one of the reasons he didn't do well with Latino voters is that there are - well, first of all, they're a very small proportion of Republicans that are Latino.
But secondly, his comments about immigration didn't fare well. And also, you have to split the Cubans versus the non-Cuban Hispanics. He did very well with the Cuban vote in South Florida. But he did not do very well with the Latino vote that's non-Cuban that's spread across the state.
INSKEEP: Now, you've just said something really interesting there because it reminds us that when we say Latinos, we're talking actually about a group - unbelievable number of people from unbelievable numbers of places. And it's a very segmented population, and Cubans may be more Republican than others, for example.
MACMANUS: Right. And we've seen a huge surge of Puerto Rican voters into Florida because of the island's economics. We've seen thousands of families move in here - even since 2012. And while they didn't vote in the Republican primary, many of them have registered as Democrats because groups like Mi Familia Vota have been very actively and aggressively registering these new arrivals from Puerto Rico.
But among the Hispanic population, the Puerto Ricans now are almost as large as Cubans. But you have sizable proportions of Colombians, Nicaraguans - people from El Salvador, Honduras, Venezuela. This is the melting pot of Latin America.
INSKEEP: Can I ask one question about the Cuban-American hometown candidate? We've been interviewing voters around Tampa the last couple of days, and we had trouble finding anybody who's wildly enthusiastic for Marco Rubio. There seemed to be a lot of disappointed actually. Maybe that's the best word. What happened to him?
MACMANUS: A lot of it was the fact that he was a little bit late coming to Florida to campaign. You know, sometimes you can take your backyard for granted. He was so busy working other states ahead of us in the primary cycle that it was only in the last couple weeks that he really focused on the all-important I-4 corridor. And he needed to do really, really well because this is the swing part of the state.
INSKEEP: The center of the state...
MACMANUS: He did not do as well as had anticipated.
INSKEEP: Just about 15 seconds here. Would you look forward to the November election and say wow, this state really could be in play - this is going to be a serious, serious swing state?
MACMANUS: Oh, always. And if you look at the vote totals, Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump got almost the same number of total votes last night.
INSKEEP: Suggesting a mount of enthusiasm at this point anyway. Susan MacManus, thanks very much.
MACMANUS: Thank you.
INSKEEP: She's at the University of South Florida.
DAVID GREENE, HOST:
Now let's talk through the results in the state of Ohio. We are in Cleveland, and I'm joined by Karen Beckwith. She's chair of political science department at Case Western Reserve University. Professor, thanks for coming in.
KAREN BECKWITH: Well, you're welcome. Glad to be here.
GREENE: Let's start with the Republican results. John Kasich - a big night in his own state. He's the governor. He sort of puts up a roadblock to Donald Trump. We spoke with a lot of voters yesterday who seemed to be saying they were voting for Kasich with no expectation that he could actually win the nomination.
It was sort of an I-don't-like-the-other-candidates. He's a guy we know here. Is that what this was about, or does he have a chance now to really draw some establishment Republicans in and be a real serious challenge to Donald Trump?
BECKWITH: Well, I think he has the opportunity to challenge Donald Trump. If Trump does not come to the convention with a majority of delegates who would be compelled to vote for him on the first ballot, the hope for John Kasich moving forward will be that between him and Senator Cruz and, perhaps still, the others who are in the race or even not in the race. There are still people who have delegates going to the convention.
If they can combine to deny Donald the majority of delegates who would be compelled to vote for him on the first ballot, then on the second ballot, delegates are released. And then we could say it's a brokered the convention. But at that point, then there will be some negotiating. It is still the case that more Republican Party primary voters want someone other than Donald Trump.
GREENE: And you could see Kasich as emerging as that person potentially - if the math works out?
BECKWITH: I think it's possible. We'll see if it's probable. One of the things that was really interesting to me in the exit poll results from yesterday is that in the state of Ohio, obviously, Governor Kasich did very well. There was no gender gap for Governor Kasich or for Senator Cruz. Both of them drew equally from men and women in the Ohio Republican primary electorate.
The same is true for Governor Kasich in regard to age groups and also race.
This was not true for Mr. Trump, who has a huge gender gap. He is not the preferred candidate of female Republican primary voters, and he is also not the preferred candidate of anyone who is not white. So he's going to have - if he is the candidate and runs in Ohio in the general election, he's going to have difficulty in his own party identification - his own party.
GREENE: Just about a minute left. I wonder if we could turn to the Democratic side. There's one young woman who I spoke with yesterday, and I wish I could play you her voice. We don't have time. But she basically told me she's voting for Bernie Sanders. She doesn't trust Hillary Clinton. She thinks the Clinton family is corrupt. She's 33 years old. We've heard about this so-called problem that Hillary Clinton has generating enthusiasm among young female voters. If she indeed goes on to be the nominee, is that a problem for her?
BECKWITH: Well, if she goes on to be the nominee, I don't think it will be a problem for her because I think the Democratic Party supporters will come together to support whoever the candidate is. I think that's true on the other side as well, so to speak - that if Clinton is not the nominee, her supporters will come around and rally around Bernie Sanders if he turns out to be the candidate. It's likely to be Clinton. I'm interested in the attention that's been given to young women, particularly young white women, because young African-American women, like their older sisters, are willing to support Clinton in very high percentage.
GREENE: OK. Karen Beckwith is chair of the political science department at Case Western Reserve University here in Cleveland. Professor, thanks so much for joining us. We really appreciate it.
BECKWITH: You're welcome. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.