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The Brief: Trump's Winning Voters, But Could He Lose Delegates?

In the GOP race, more attention is being paid to the work of wrangling delegates, an effort that could prove pivotal should no candidate lock up the nomination on the first ballot.

Republican presidential candidates Donald Trump and U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz rally in Texas prior to the 2016 Texas primary.

The Big Conversation

Donald Trump continues to win states, but what's also coming into focus is Ted Cruz's organizational strength in locking up delegates to the national convention this summer. It's a development that could end up pivotal should no candidate secure a majority of delegates and take the nomination on the first ballot.

In a long takeout published Monday morning, Politico's Kyle Cheney laid out the challenge facing Trump.

He writes, "Cruz is racking up support from prospective delegates across the country, even in states where Trump dominated the primary ... In state after state, GOP leaders report impressive efforts by the Cruz campaign to understand the intricacies of local delegate battles and maneuver to install its loyalists in coveted convention slots."

States vary widely on eligibility requirements for delegates. A candidate like Cruz, who draws on the conservative activist base of his party, can in all likelihood count on his supporters being more dedicated to attending the local and state conventions where delegates are selected.

The Trump campaign could be resorting to litigation to counteract moves by the Cruz campaign to snag delegates after the vote in some states.

The New York Times reported that the Trump campaign was planning to file a complaint with the Republican National Committee on how delegates were selected in Louisiana where Trump "won the primary but may emerge with fewer delegates than" Cruz.

The Times went on to note that Trump mentioned the possibility of litigation when he concluded a tweet from over the weekend with "Lawsuit coming"

Trib Must Reads

Report: Transportation Issues Hinder DFW Veterans, by Alana Rocha — For many North Texas veterans, lack of transportation is one of the main impediments to accessing services, getting medical care or holding jobs, a new study finds.

Cruz Barnstorms Wisconsin Ahead of Trump, by Patrick Svitek — By the time Donald Trump holds his first rally in Wisconsin on Tuesday, Ted Cruz's campaign will have held almost a dozen events in the state in advance of the April 5 primary.

The Day Ahead

•    Tribune CEO and Editor-in-Chief Evan Smith hosts a lunch hour discussion with Fort Worth state Reps. Craig Goldman, Stephanie Klick and Ramon Romero Jr. The event, taking place at Texas Christian University, will be live streamed for those unable to attend in person.

•    Three House committees meet at the Capitol complex to hold interim hearings. They are: Homeland Security & Public Safety [E2.014]; Investments & Financial Services [E2.016]; and a select committee on federal environmental regulation [JHR 140]

•    And on the Senate side, five legislative panels are planning a total of four interim hearings. They are: Education and Higher Education (joint meeting) [E1.036]; State Affairs [Senate Chamber]; Transportation [E1.016]; and a select committee on transportation planning [E1.016]

•    The three remaining GOP presidential hopefuls — Donald Trump, Ted Cruz and John Kasich — are slated to participate in a 7 p.m. town hall hosted by CNN in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. The event will be telecast on CNN, CNN International and CNN en Espanol. It will also be livestreamed online and through the CNNgo app.


USGS forecasts high earthquake risk linked to oil and gas activity, Houston Chronicle

Unlike national convention, Texas GOP gathering in May will allow guns, The Dallas Morning News

Wisconsin Gov. Walker to announce presidential endorsement, The Associated Press

Mayor faces ethics complaint over pipeline, political contributions, San Antonio Express-News

Medicaid expansion could help 400,000 mentally ill Texans, report says, Austin American-Statesman

UTMB researchers develop mouse model for Zika vaccine testing, Houston Chronicle

City Council expected to consider Uber-friendly ordinance, Corpus Christi Caller-Times

Court blocks TEA attempt to remove Progreso ISD board, San Antonio Express-News

Why aren’t Texas high school students prepared for college?, Austin American-Statesman

Quote to Note

"That's when I decided I was going to vote for Donald Trump. I finally had enough. Politics as usual has to stop. Like him or hate him, Trump is the only real outsider who can do that."

— Austin software engineer Tom Haskin, who said a Rick Perry interview on Fox News last week was the final straw that drove him into the Donald Trump column

News From Home

•    The controversy over Texas' Top 10 Percent Rule for college admissions shows how fraught the debate over race and higher education has become. Read our "Price of Admission" series, which looks at the history of that debate and how the Top 10 Percent Rule creates challenges for high schools and colleges.

•    Texas held its Democratic and Republican primaries on March 1. In 22 races, no candidate won a majority of votes; the top two finishers from each of those races will meet in May 24 runoff elections. Explore the current state of this year's elections here.

Trib Events for the Calendar

•    The Price of Admission: A Conversation on the Top 10 Percent Rule on March 31 at Austin Community College Highland Campus

•    A Conversation with Sen. Carlos Uresti and Rep. Poncho Nevárez on April 13 at Sul Ross State University in Alpine

•    A Conversation with Dawn Buckingham on April 21 at the Austin Club

•    A Conversation on San Antonio & the Legislature: The Issues in the Interim on April 26 at the University of Texas at San Antonio

•    A Symposium on the Texas Economy on April 29 at the University of Houston

•    The Texas Tribune's third Texas-centric Trivia Night on May 1 at The Highball in Austin

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