Donald Trump continued his surge in the Republican primary race for the 2016 general election over rivals Texas Senator Ted Cruz and Ohio Governor John Kasich on Tuesday by winning Florida, North Carolina, and Illinois.
Trump’s nearly 20-point win in the Sunshine State led Florida Senator Marco Rubio to suspend his campaign.
That’s good news for online poker in the United States. Rubio was one of the cosigners of the Senate’s Restoration of America’s Wire Act (RAWA), a bill that would repeal all authorized forms of Internet gambling.
Kasich landed his first win last night by taking his home state.
On the Democratic side, Hillary Clinton expanded her lead over Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders by winning all four states.
Though Missouri remains too close to call on both sides, Trump and Clinton are expected to narrowly edge their closest rivals, Cruz and Sanders.
It was another monumental evening for Trump as the billionaire is now the only Republican contender who can realistically amass enough delegates to ensure the party’s nomination.
With 19 primaries remaining, Trump needs to win about 59 percent of the delegates going forward while Cruz would need to win 80 percent. Kasich is serving as spoiler and can only hope for a contested convention.
Anti-online poker advocate Sheldon Adelson made his billions from gambling through his Las Vegas Sands Corporation, but like Rubio, he too supports RAWA.
Previously calling his advocacy of blocking Internet gaming a “moral issue,” Adelson has seemed to come to the reality that adequate support to make online gambling a federal issue simply isn’t present in Congress.
Israeli political blogger Tal Schneider revealed this week that the Vegas tycoon said in February he’d be willing to support any Republican candidate including Trump.
“Why not?” the billionaire asked reporters. “Trump is a businessman. I am a businessman.”
Following Rubio’s departure from the 2016 race, it’s slim pickings for Adelson.
Cruz is a strong defender of the US Constitution, and since America’s supreme document explicitly states in the Tenth Amendment that states reserve the powers not dictated to the federal government, he’s extremely unlikely to support a bill such as RAWA.
Trump is also a rather unlikely backer of RAWA. Though he’s remained rather mum on iGambling during his presidential run, Trump said in 2011, “This has to happen because many other countries are doing it and like usual the US is just missing out.”
Trump Skips Debate, Fox News Folds
Fox News was set to host yet another Republican presidential debate on March 21, but Trump said this week he wouldn’t be in attendance. Instead, the GOP leader will speak before the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) in Washington, DC.
The Republican debate would have been the 13th of the primary season. “I’m making a very major speech in front of a very important group of people,” Trump explained on Fox News. “I won the debates, but I think we’ve had enough.”
Trump won’t be the only candidate speaker at the March 20-22 AIPAC Policy Conference. Clinton, his assumed Democratic challenger, will also present her views to the Jewish coalition.
Cruz is also being billed as a confirmed speaker on the AIPAC website, though it’s not clear if his speech would have conflicted with the planned Fox News showdown.
In response to Trump bailing, Fox News decided Wednesday to cancel the debate.