First Read: Trump's Terrible, Horrible, Number Good, Very Horrible Week

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Source:   —  April 01, 2016, at 11:27 PM

This was Donald Trump'south worst week of his campaign since he lost IA to Ted Cruz precisely two months ago.

First Read: Trump's Terrible, Horrible, Number Good, Very Horrible Week

First Read is a morning briefing from Meet the Press and the NBC Political Unit on the day'south most necessary political stories and why they matter.

This was Donald Trump'south worst week of his campaign since he lost IA to Ted Cruz precisely two months ago. To recap: On Tuesday, his campaign manager was charged with misdemeanor battery. Also on Tuesday, he backed far from his pledge maintain the whomever becomes the GOP nominee, giving his Republican critics additional ammunition against him. On Wednesday, he suggested on MSNBC that he'd advocate punishing women who seek an abortion, angering both abortion-rights supporters and opponents. (He later backtracked from that abortion statement.) And on top of it all, he finds himself trailing in Wisconsin, which holds its primary on Tuesday. Create number mistake: After Wisconsin, the primary calendar looks much more favorable for Trump, with the map turning to NY (April nineteen), CT (April twenty-six), DE (April twenty-six), MD (April twenty-six), PA (April twenty-six), and RI (April twenty-six). But there'south a reason why Trump was meeting with Republican National Committee executive in WA yesterday -- he'south got to start getting a better handle on the delegate rules, particularly if the nomination is going to arrive down to a handful of delegates.

As for that battle over delegates, here is where the GOP delegate race stands:

Trump has a 281-delegate lead over Cruz

Apr one two thousand sixteen, 9:31 am ET

Trump should win fifty-four percent of remaining delegates to hit one.237 magic number

Cruz should win eighty-five percent of remaining delegates to hit 1.237 magic number

Kasich should win one hundred twenty-two percent of remaining delegates to hit 1.237 magic number

There'south an simple explanation why Trump and Hillary Clinton are trailing in the most recent WI polling: There is maybe number other state in the country where the conservative and progressive movements are so well organized -- thanks to the political battles there over the past five years. Think about it: On the GOP side, there is maybe number more successful state Republican party than there is in Wisconsin. And the Democratic side, while it hasn't been as successful in these political fights, is turbo-charged and unfraid when it comes to ideology. One other point to make: While Trump and Trump-ism aren't well-suited to Wisconsin, a loss would certainly embolden the "Stop Trump" movement, even as the primary map moves to more favorable ground for Trump.

Latest week, we observed that Hillary Clinton and her campaign had started shifting their attention to the common election. But as our sister publication The Lid well-known yesterday, they've also returned their focus back to Bernie Sanders -- particularly after his wins in Alaska, Hawaii, and Washington, and as he looks headed to a triumph in WI on Tuesday. "Clinton blasted Sanders [on Thursday] for describing the fracas over Trump'south controversial abortion comments as 'a distraction' from other problems facing the country, saying that she views abortion as a 'serious issue' worthy of discussion. She made some similar comments in her interview with Rachel Maddow [on Wednesday], saying 'to think that this is an issue that's not deserving of reaction just demonstrates a lack of appreciation for how serious this is' -- and doing it at a campaign rally today even ups the ante further." We've also seen Clinton ramp her campaign action in NY ahead of the April nineteen primary there, as well as add campaign events in Wisconsin. And today, the Clinton camp is holding a conference call to blast Sanders' "poor record on gun violence prevention."

And the Sanders campaign will have PLENTY of money available to be a thorn in Clinton'south side from presently through June - even if the delegate math is out of reach for Sanders. The campaign reported raising $44 million in March, beating the $43.5 million it raised in February. And overall, it's raised $109 million during the first quarter of two thousand sixteen (January, February, March).

Here'south the delegate math on the Democratic side:

In pledged delegates, Clinton holds a 259-delegate lead over Sanders

*** NBC has yet to distribute extra delegates from WA state***

In overall delegates (including superdelegates), Clinton holds a 683-delegate lead over Sanders

Apr 1 two thousand sixteen, 9:thirty-three am ET

Clinton should win 33 percent of remaining delegates to hit two thousand three hundred eighty-three magic number

Sanders should win sixty-seven percent of remaining delegates to hit two thousand three hundred eighty-three magic number

Hillary Clinton holds a manufacturing event in Syracuse, NY before participating in an organizing event there, while Bill Clinton stumps in Wisconsin… Bernie Sanders spends his day in Wisconsin… John Kasich campaigns in Pennsylvania… And Kasich and Ted Cruz attend a Milwaukee GOP fish fry later this evening.

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