With less than a month until the end of the presidential primaries and caucuses, Donald Trump appears confident he'll pick up the Republican nomination without much trouble at the party's convention. And while Hillary Clinton holds a commanding lead in pledged and unpledged delegates, Sen. Bernie Sanders has not diminished his attacks on the former Secretary of State.
Joining “Chicago Tonight” to talk about the race for president are Pat Brady, public affairs consultant and former chair of the state GOP; Anthony Anderson, a military veteran and an Illinois delegate for Donald Trump; Delmarie Cobb, a media and political consultant who's working for Hillary Clinton's Illinois operation; and Jonathan Jackson, a Bernie Sanders supporter who's also a businessman and a spokesman for the Rainbow PUSH Coalition.
On the outlook for the Democrats
Cobb is confident in Clinton’s changes to clinch the nomination.
“I think [Clinton is] certainly going to have the delegates necessary to be the nominee when we get to Philadelphia,” Cobb said. “It’s the math, not the map. She has the numbers. She’s got 3 million more votes than Bernie Sanders and 2 million more than Donald Trump. So she is going to be the nominee.”
Jackson, however, thinks Sanders still has a chance.
“The Democrats can’t say it’s closed in the primary but they want it open in the general,” Jackson said of independent voters. “Now you’ve excluded people from having their right to a voice and participation. They should let independents in. And [Sanders] has to run all the way to California because California is the largest state in the nation … It’s rather insulting for someone to say you ought to drop out now. Let every vote count.”
On Donald Trump as the presumptive nominee
Brady isn’t on board with Trump, even though eight in 10 Republicans say they’ll support Trump if he’s the nominee.
“I’ll never vote for Donald Trump ... I don’t think that Donald Trump has the temperament to be president, but more importantly to me as a lifelong Republican, he’s not a Republican,” Brady said of Trump's previous policy record. “If eight out of 10 Republicans are behind him, that’s great. But eight out of 10 Republicans aren’t going to win you the campaign. When seven out of 10 in the middle – which you need in a state-by-state Electoral College race – aren’t going to vote for you, you’ve got problems.”
Anderson said since Trump’s support in the primaries has been decisive, don’t count him out as a legitimate contender in the general election.
“There is a fervor out there for the Republican Party, which people like Pat Brady don’t see that. They don’t see the train coming. At this point, they’re going to miss out on a perfect opportunity for this country to become great again,” Anderson said.
More election coverage from 'Chicago Tonight'
May 5: Now that Donald Trump is the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, the hand-wringing and discord within the party is growing.
May 3: The barbs turned personal during Tuesday's primary battle in Indiana. Trump claimed another victory, and Cruz suspended his campaign. What will these results mean for the big picture?
April 20: Tuesday’s primary in New York proved that Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are the front-runners in their respective parties, with both candidates winning big in a state that was crucial to each campaign. What does it mean for the other candidates moving forward?
April 12: As Republican presidential front-runner Donald Trump blasts the delegate-selection process, we take a look at how it works on both sides of the aisle.
March 21: Efforts to derail Donald Trump's momentum heat up within the GOP as voters in Arizona and Utah decide who to support in Tuesday's primaries.
March 15: Donald Trump is the winner in Illinois, gaining 24 delegates in the state's Republican presidential primary. On the Democratic side, Hillary Clinton eked out a close victory over Bernie Sanders.