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OFF TO THE RACES: Sanders get a YUGE win in Michigan
For the full results of last night's contests in Michigan, Mississippi, Idaho and Hawaii, check out our results page here.
NBC's Perry Bacon Jr. wraps Sanders' big victory in Michigan. "Sanders had one of his most important victories of the Democratic race, winning his first primary in a state with a large (23 percent) black electorate and carrying a state where Hillary Clinton was the favorite. Sanders still fell further behind Clinton in the delegate race on Tuesday night, because of the former secretary of state getting more than 80 percent of the vote in Mississippi. Clinton only narrowly lost Michigan, meaning she and Sanders will split the delegates."
And here's Alex Seitz-Wald: "The Michigan victory, Sanders' first in a big and relatively diverse state, buys his campaign a lifeline and puts him back on a path that could at least conceivably end in him accepting the Democratic presidential nomination in July. And it underscores still lingering weaknesses with Clinton's candidacy."
And Benjy Sarlin, on Trump's big wins: "Donald Trump shrugged off continuous attacks from his rivals, damaging stories in the press, and regular confusion over his own policy platform to end the week where he began: the front-runner for the Republican nomination. At the same time, Senator Marco Rubio, the candidate many in the establishment pegged as their champion, appears to be on life support. His rapid decline leaves Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, a hardline conservative loathed by many party insiders, as the GOP'S last best alternative to Trump."
The Wall Street Journal notes: "Mr. Cruz won in Idaho, bolstering his argument that he is the party’s chief alternative to Mr. Trump. Idaho marks the seventh state the Texan has won, the most of anyone in the GOP race other than Mr. Trump."
POLITICO wonders of Republicans: "How are they losing to this guy?" MORE: "Donald Trump went on and on for nearly an hour, basking in his latest wins, razzing his rivals, slinging steaks — literally offering red meat — and repeatedly thanking a bygone Yankees legend for his endorsement. Not for one second did the television networks, even with Hillary Clinton speaking at the same time, cut away. It doesn’t matter what Trump says, only that he continues to talk."
The New York Times notes: "Mrs. Clinton lost badly in Michigan among independents, showed continued weakness with working-class white Democrats, and was unable to count on as much of an advantage with black voters as she had in the South.”
How he did it: "Mr. Sanders pulled off a startling upset in Michigan on Tuesday by traveling to communities far from Detroit and by hammering Mrs. Clinton on an issue that resonated in this still-struggling state: her past support for trade deals that workers here believe robbed them of manufacturing jobs. Almost three-fifths of voters said that trade with other countries was more likely to take away jobs, according to exit polls by Edison Research, and those voters favored Mr. Sanders by a margin of more than 10 points," the New York Times writes.
Our new NBC/WSJ poll gets a glimpse at how Trump, Cruz and Rubio would fare in a general election.
The Wall Street Journal writes: "This is the year of the angry white male."
CLINTON: Ruth Marcus has a reality check for those convinced that a Clinton indictment is coming any day.
CRUZ: From POLITICO: "Republican elites are begrudgingly embracing Ted Cruz—and hanging Marco Rubio out to dry. Panicked at Donald Trump’s dominance and dismayed by Rubio’s continued inability to do anything about it, some top Republican power brokers are turning to Cruz, putting aside their policy and personal misgivings to back the candidate they now openly label as their best hope to stop Trump’s GOP takeover."
RUBIO: The AP, on his last glimmers of hope: "Suddenly reduced to a single-state strategy, Rubio's team says he will campaign in Florida and nowhere else for the next week, even as four other states also prepare to host primary elections Tuesday. At the same time, his allies are pelting Trump with an avalanche of negative ads on Florida TV that reinforce the same message Rubio and his army of volunteers offer to anyone who will listen: Trump can't be trusted.
TRUMP: From one of us(!), on our latest NBC/WSJ poll: "Although Donald Trump is leading the Republican horse race, a majority of American voters believe his comments on the campaign trail are insulting; six in 10 say he's harming the Republican Party's image; and nearly two-thirds have a negative opinion of him — making Trump the most unpopular figure in the poll. What's more, just half of Republican primary voters — 53 percent — say they'd be satisfied with Trump as the party's presidential nominee."
*** Wednesday’s “Andrea Mitchell Reports” line-up: NBC’s Andrea Mitchell breaks down last night’s primary results and looks ahead to the next big contests with Clinton campaign press secretary Brian Fallon; former RNC chair Michael Steele; former Congressman Harold Ford, Jr.; the Washington Post’s Chris Cillizza and Anne Gearan; and our NBC reporters on the trail – Peter Alexander, Gabe Gutierrez and Kasie Hunt.