Although Donald Trump won the state of New Hampshire in Tuesday night’s Republican primary, I thought the 3rd place finish for Ted Cruz was the biggest win of the night for several reasons.
Cruz spent the least amount of money than any other candidate, spending $580,000 while everyone else was spending millions. On the other end of the spectrum, Bush spent the most, yet still came in 4th place behind Cruz.
NH Combined campaign/SuperPAC spending
— Stephen Hayes (@stephenfhayes) February 10, 2016
Now $580,000 in of itself is a lot of money, but when it comes to political campaigns for president, this is a small value, especially when you compare it to the other candidates. The fact that he came in 3rd place for spending relatively little in New Hampshire is very impressive.
If that isn’t incredible enough, he accomplished this feat in a moderate-liberal state that wasn’t expected to be in a conservative’s favor. Plus, Cruz intentionally decided to not put in all his efforts in New Hampshire, because he knew it wasn’t his strongest state, instead focusing on South Carolina and the many southern states that will come to his favor on Super Tuesday, March 1st.
Not to take away Trump’s win, which nobody can deny was very dominant, but he was already highly expected to win the state with 20 point leads from multiple polls going into the primary. On the other hand, the RealClearPolitics average polling had Cruz at 4th place (11.8%), behind Trump (31.2%), Rubio (14%), and Kasich (13.5%) going into Tuesday night. So as was the case in Iowa, in which polling had Cruz in 2nd but won, he once again beat polling expectations by coming in 3rd.
I know many pundits were not expecting Cruz to come in 3rd in New Hampshire, which is another reason why he is much stronger than everyone thinks and should never be underestimated. Not only was his finish in the given circumstances great, but it continues his momentum going into the southern states, which has many more conservative evangelical votes that will go to Cruz, as was the case in Iowa.
What do you think about Ted Cruz’s finish in New Hampshire? Comment below and please share on facebook and twitter.