Theory: Most GOP candidates are GOP-Establishment politicians. Despite what many 'conservative' personalities are saying Cruz is hated more than Trump by the GOPe, I disagree. The only proof will be when the fringe candidates drop out and throw their weight to one of the top two: Cruz and Trump. I disagree Cruz is hated more than Trump, and I think most will throw their support, and their voters' support, to Cruz.
1) The poll numbers are reflected in the actual primary results.The big unknown: Which candidate will Carson (9%) ask his supporters to back?
2) Trump and Cruz will be the last two standing.
The math: I have calculated two scenarios.
1) One that assumes 90% of a candidate's support will go to either Cruz or Trump with the other 10% going to the other.
2) The second scenario assumes a 80-20% split.
As you can see, in either scenario, Cruz is within range of winning. Carson's 9% is an unknown, as is the missing 13% of GOP support.
Another Factor - Timing. If candidates hang on too long, Trump benefits as he collects more delegates with each completed primary.
This is a google spreadsheet that you may copy and modify to develop your own scenarios. If you have something better, send it to me and I'll post it!1) Who will Carson back?2) Do you agree with my other assumptions of how each other candidate will act?